A study that was published in the journal called Demography suggests that being a new parent could make you miserable and could potentially be the worse thing to happen to you. It was undertaken by demographer Rachel Margolis and called “Parental Well-Being Surrounding First Birth as a Determinant of Further Parity Progression” The study was carried out in Germany.
The study was complied to figure out the difference between the number of children that parent’s want vs the number of children that they actually have. German people say on average that they want two kids and end up have one and a half. Therefore you could state that German parents ideally want two but change their mind after the first. The study alleges that a “drop in well-being surrounding first birth,” also known as “unhappiness.”
The data was complied over a period of years. Asking them over a course of years about their “overall well-being”. The total number of years was 5 encompassing three years prior to the birth of their 1st child and 2 years after. Though they weren’t asked about parenting directly.
The study alleges alarmingly, that the unhappiness didn’t set in to the first and second year of a childs life.
The Washington Post also have highlighted studies where people are asked about thier happiness during a life event. This time on a scale of 1-10. Vice are reporting that an average of 0.6 decline in happiness after a divorce. A 1 point decline in experiencing unemployment or death of a spouse. A birth of a first child. An average decline of 1.6.
What did the study look at?
The study looked at a total of three categories of unhappiness. 2 categories included things like troubles conceiving, being pregnant and giving birth, fertility problems and puking. The other category looked at “continuous and intense nature of childrearing in the first year,” which includes things like “depression, domestic isolation, and relationship breakdown.”
While this may be alarming, the study does note that further research is needed to “address the ways in which parenting experiences throughout the life course affect fertility behavior upward or downward.”
They don’t look at other aspects of being a parent such as the strains of a parent on an elementary school student or an adult.
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