How Has The Family Changed Over The Last 20 Years

Family Changed Over Last 20 Years

Since the last 20 years, family life has changed dramatically in many different ways. A family is a group of people who live together under the same roof. It can also be defined as people who are related either by blood or marriage. Today, the way we run our families is totally different from the way past families were run.

All these changes have been brought about by the invention of new technology, the influence of the media and also environmental and economic changes. But what is the true meaning of family?

Family is not what it was once. Today before a person starts a family, there are way many things to consider. With the rise in economic changes, you have to be sure that you will be in a position to provide for your family. This includes things like affordable housing, basic needs and also education for your kids.

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A person who is not in a position to offer all these are likely to delay in starting a family. This is unlike the past years whereby reaching a certain age you were expected to start a family.

American Family Has Changed

Here are some of the things that have contributed to family change over the last 20 years.

Increase In Divorce

Unlike the past years where marriages were known to last until death, in the last few years, the divorce rate has dramatically raised in most countries. It’s like the ingredient that made marriages work is missing nowadays.

This rise in divorce has contributed to the rise of sole parents raising their children on their own. In the past, children were raised by both parents but today the number of single parents is increasing daily.

Increase in Cohabitation

In the past years, marriage was valued. Today, people will live together and start a family even if they are not married.

Work-Life Balance

Today, both men and women want to establish themselves career-wise before they start a family. The past year’s people were married in their young ages but today they marry at a later age before they get established in their careers. The longer it takes to get established the more they delay starting a family. Also for the need to balance work and family, people are opting to have few children.

Also, women are no longer housewives unlike in the past years. They are as equally educated as their male counterparts and women employment has risen over the past few years. Working women are likely to delay getting married; having kids and the few who wish to get kids will only have one or two at most. This is for them to balance their work and family.

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A decrease in Fertility Rate

There has been a decrease in fertility rates over the past 20 years. This is one of the reasons that have contributed to having smaller families today.  The overall decrease in fertility has led to a decrease in the average household size over the years.

Also, unlike in the past years, the increase in the use of contraceptives has risen. People are able to control the timing and occurrence of births. This has led to the postponing of having children until a couple establishes itself in the labor and housing markets.


There are also fewer people who are willing to get married and those who get married are likely to end up divorcing. These are some of the things that illustrate how the family has changed over the last 20 years.


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