ForbesWoman Single (Selfish) Ladies: Waiting For Love…And For Money
11/07/2011 @ 5:30PM |871 views
A new study out of Australia knocked the stereotype of selfish, single, Sex & The City-style women on its head this week with findings that it’s not career ambition that’s keeping young women from settling down, but rather a long list of reasons outside of her control. First and foremost, a lack of a willing, able—and kid-friendly—partner.
Women with no children identified key barriers to motherhood as not having a partner or their relationship not being stable or their partner not wanting children. Some described health problems such as fear of passing on a genetic disease or concerns as to how they would manage to care for a child when their health was poor.
Housing ranked highly, too, with women wanting to reduce a mortgage, to renovate or to move to more suitable accommodation before having a child.
In other words, the fact that a growing number of women are remaining childless well into their thirties isn’t that career ambition has taken the place of maternal instinct, but that, quite simply, conditions aren’t perfect.
What’s interesting, though, is that the newly revealed female thinking falls in line with what’s traditionally been the male attitude towards marriage: that one must wait until his ducks are in line before finding a mate and beginning a familial life:
“Historically men have been more eager to marry when they’re financially secure, and women have wanted to marry when they wanted children,” says Helen Fisher, a biological anthropologist and author of Why Him? Why Her? Fisher calls it a “human male need” to provide for his wife, a desire that hearkens back to our hunter-and-gatherer days when the “dual-income family was the rule.” She harvested the fruits and vegetables, and he brought home the meat.
Also see Why Are Single Guys Still Living With Mom and Dad?, Do Men in Relationships Convince Themselves that Other Fertile Women Aren’t that Hot Anyway?, Don’t Work… to Keep Your Husband Faithful? and Marriage Helps Men Keep in Shape?