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Possible Further Decline Of The US Birthrate During Coronavirus.Movie.mp4

Hal Graves
Hal Graves - 30 Views
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Published on 14 Jan 2021 / In News and Politics

In late 2019 I produced a video on the declining US birth rate, and the ramifications that held for the future of America. In 2017 the US birth rate went to a 30-year low. The total fertility rate, which estimates the average number of children a woman could have in her lifetime, was 1.76 births per woman. This is well below the "replacement rate" for fertility which should be about 2.1 children per woman. The rate was 2.12 births per woman just in 2007. Why is this happening? My first video revealed how the reasons for the decline were lifestyle factors, waiting for the right partner, and wanting to build careers. And by delaying childbirth until age 37 or 38, couples will have less time to have a big family. To replace the US population we need about 2,100 births per 1,000 women. But in 2017 the average was 1,764.5 births per 1,000 women...the largest drop since 2010. Now with the 2020 coronavirus pandemic the birthrate most likely decrease even more. This will not bode well for the US's social and economic future over the next several decades.

Even prior to the crisis, a significant portion of Americans were putting off key life events. Those in their 20s and 30s were more often not getting married, having children, purchasing homes, and pursuing financial independence. They also had high student loan and credit card debt causing them to postpone marriage and having children even if they wanted to. The virus pandemic is now exacerbating those concerns. Younger people are facing higher unemployment, lockdowns, and social distancing factors. The last thing on many of their minds is pursuing relationships and having children right now!

Because of the coronavirus pandemic we're likely to see a huge birth decline in the US. Experts like the Brookings Institute in Washington, DC say it could "leave the nation with about a half-a-million fewer births than otherwise would be expected." When they analyzed fertility studies from the 2007-2009 recession and the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic, the US drop in births could be around 300,000 to 500,000 births because of Covid-19. Dr. Rahul Gupta, chief medical and health officer at March of Dimes in New York recently stated to CNN that after the 1918 flu pandemic there was a 10 percent drop in fertility after roughly nine to ten months after peak mortality. "Any drop of 10 percent, or 15 percent, or 20 percent in the next few years could really spell trouble economically for the next generation."

A survey by "Modern Fertility" after the coronavirus started, found 31 percent of women saying the pandemic had affected their fertility decisions, and 61 percent were more concerned about their ability to have children right now. Other figures found:

• 46 percent are concerned about access to prenatal care during the pandemic
• 41 percent are postponing children for pandemic financial reasons
• 27 percent are worried about contracting COVID-19 themselves
• 22 percent are worried about their partner contracting the virus

One final note about the US birth rate during the virus, is that couples are having less sex. The Kinsey institute found that:

• 66 percent of respondents say intimacy and connection feels more important since the start of the pandemic.
• 38 percent of couples say they are having sex less often. The survey found because of the lockdowns and unemployment...there's no space between many partners which often creates desire. It's been said that "absence makes the heart grow fonder." During this virus couples don't get to see each other from afar off. So a lot of people are struggling with desire.

What does all this mean? Being cooped up does not necessarily mean a "baby boom" is on the way as a result of the pandemic. About everyone has been stressed out more from worrying about the virus, jobs, finances, and isolation and loneliness. But, a severely falling US birthrate is very concerning, especially when the numbers were already worrisome before the pandemic.

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