There are talks of the U.S. being in a “baby bust” instead of the “baby boom” people thought would happen because of the pandemic, and here’s the thing: I’m single? So I, and the many singles stuck at home like me, can’t really contribute to the “baby” conversation because I just sit alone and watch movies, which isn’t that much different from what I did before.
At the beginning of this extended homestay, people thought that we’d come out of the pandemic with a baby boom, mainly because people are bored and stuck inside, but that didn’t really work out for a whole bunch of pretty obvious reasons that people just didn’t seem to think about.
America has entered a pandemic-inspired baby bust.
Guess not even locking couples up and obliterating their social calendars could convince more Americans to have babies.https://t.co/l8sLL8T71g
— NBCLX (@NBCLX) January 25, 2021
Our current unemployment rate is at 7.9%, and those of us who are still employed are worried about what the future holds since we are still in the pandemic a year later. For me, personally, it helps that I’m single, and my contribution to this world was adopting a cat named Benjamin “Benji” Wyatt who is the love of my life and also an idiot. But more than that, no one knows about job security right now because we’re in the midst of a global pandemic so the idea of having children when everyone is in crisis and worried about the future doesn’t seem that appealing!
It’s also not World War II. The idea of a “baby boom” in the modern era is, frankly, absurd. From modern contraception to our mindset of careers over relationships, it isn’t the same as the baby boom, and thinking there would be a baby boom probably goes along with how our society values adults.
But maybe I like that the proverbial “they” assumed that everyone in a couple would just … all have kids because they have nothing better to do while trapped at home than make babies? And that most of us are not sad, single millennials fearing for the future and what it holds for us since our government didn’t care about the pandemic or protecting Americans?
The idea is that, because a pandemic “obliterated our social calendars,” more babies would happen, and honestly that’s what happens when you live in a society that still somehow thinks this is the 1950s and it is our social calendars stopping us from having kids rather than the fact that we have no money/have dreams/are single/maybe don’t want kids.
I’m glad there is a baby bust. Maybe we’ll stop putting our worth as adults on the children we can bring into this world and realize that there is more to people than just their reproductive worth. Am I saying all of this as a singleton in the pandemic who doesn’t know how I’ll be able to date once we’re free again? Probably, but still.
(image: Warner Bros.)
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