If we hear one thing about millennials on a regular basis (besides the fact that they like avocado toast, of course), it's that they're not having kids. It seems like some people think that's pretty upsetting since having children is such a beautiful experience (and a lot of news stories tend to focus on how confusing Generation Y is). We always hear that this age group would rather travel than start a family and that they don't have enough financial resources to do so since there's a general belief that this generation isn't getting married, either (or if they are, they're waiting much longer than previous generations). The whole getting married, buying a house, having children thing doesn't seem to be happening as much.
But there are definitely some millennials who are starting families, and it's interesting to hear how they figured out that it was the right time for them. There are so many ways for someone to know that it's time to have their first child, ranging from financial considerations to the state of their relationship.
The following 20 millennials decided that they were ready to have kids, and it's fascinating to hear what they have to say on the subject.
20 They Have Family Help
For one millennial who posted on Reddit, the fact that she has help from her family seems to have been a major factor in her decision to have children.
As she said, "I'm 25, my baby is now 10 months old. It's pretty awesome. Definitely harder to do the things you want on a moment's notice. It depends on how much help you have. My mother actually lives in the same building so that's pretty awesome. She's able to help me whenever I need it." She also said that her aunt and cousin lived nearby as well. It definitely makes sense that if you have family close by who are able to help you out, having a baby would be a much easier choice.
19 They Have The Money
No doubt about it, children cost money, and it might be tough to think about starting a family of your own if you don't have much in your bank account. There are a lot of short-term expenses, like diapers and clothes and of course food, and long-term expenses, like education, to think about.
The same 25-year-old mom from above also said on Reddit that she and her husband had enough money to start a family, so that was another reason behind the decision. She shared, "Money is no issue, my husband's family has a lot of money....we don't.....lol but they do so that's nice."
18 They Felt They Would Never Really Be "Ready"/Should Just Do It
Are you ever really ready to have a child? There seem to be two ways of looking at it: yes, you know that you're ready once you have all your ducks in a row, so to speak, like finances and being married or in a stable relationship. Or no, you can't ever really know, so you might as well jump right in if you're dreaming of starting a family of your own.
One person's perspective, according to their post on Reddit, is really interesting: "I understand where you're coming from on this, but I'm also of the opinion of, "If you keep waiting till you're 'ready' to have a baby, then you'll never have one."
17 They Had Enough Energy For Kids
Millennials are, of course, fairly young, and it seems like their youthful energy is one reason why some of them are choosing to have kids. After all, you have to run around after your children, especially when they're little.
As one person shared on Reddit, "Kids are exhausting, and you need all the stamina you have to keep up with them and give them the best start in life you can. You have more energy when you're younger, but that doesn't last for long. By the time you're pushing a bit past 30 your energy level can start dropping off pretty significantly, and even before you're reaching 40 there's a lot of things you just aren't going to be able to do anymore."
16 They Weren't Old Enough For It To Be A Financial Strain
While some millennials seem to believe that having your finances in order is a great first step before thinking about having a child, others seem to think that not having that much money to speak of is actually a benefit in this situation.
One millennial shared on Reddit, "One of the nice things is that we didn't have to restructure finances very much since we hadn't built much of anything that needed restructuring--didn't feel like a step down or like we had to cut back significantly and, if anything, we live better now than we did throughout school." That's a really interesting perspective that we don't hear very often.
15 They Waited 'Til Their Late 20s/Experienced Enough Beforehand
People might say that millennials aren't having children, but maybe only younger members of this generation aren't, and millennials are actually waiting until their late 20's to start a family.
That was the case with this woman who shared her story on Reddit.
She said, "I married quite young (24) and had my children at 29 & 32. I'm very happy with my situation. I loved the years together with my husband. We traveled a lot, we established our careers, we bought a house, we got to know each other better and better (it's good to go through some life events together). We saw our friends starting families and discussed what we wanted in parenting ourselves etc."
14 They Will Have Time For Fun Stuff When Their Kids Grow Up
What age will you be when your child turns 18 and graduates from high school? It seems like for some millennials who are having children, they're thinking that when their kids grow up, they will still have time to do fun stuff.
As one person put it on Reddit, "My husband and I got married when we were 22 and 24. We initially planned to wait a few years before getting pregnant but changed our minds and had our first baby after being married just over a year." She continued, "I am excited that having kids young means we will only be in our forties when our kids move out - still fairly young." She likes that they'll have "energy for grandkids" and money for vacations.
13 They Happily Had Kids From Different Relationships
For some millennial parents, they ended up having kids from different relationships, so that's how they started their family. And they are cool with that for sure.
One mom's perspective: she posted on Quora and said, "I'm a 26-year-old mother of 7 kids. We are a blended family. Two of my kids are from a prior relationship and my husband and I have one together. The rest are his from prior relationships. So I'm not your average young mother I guess... My advice would be, be the best you that you can be. Love your child with all your heart and do anything you must to support that child."
12 They Aren't Too Tied To Their Careers
It seems like a positive to becoming a millennial parent is that you aren't super far into your career so it's an easy time to have a kid (well, as easy as it can be, of course, since there are still all the regular challenges of parenting).
As one millennial mom posted on Reddit, "My husband and I were 25 and 23 respectively when we married. We just welcomed our son (firstborn) last October, so we were 27 and 25 when he was born. We are a few years into our careers. We're stable financially and have a nice home and cars. But I also like that we aren't TOO far into our career paths. We both still have flexibility and room to grow/change at a pace that fits with our family."
11 They Can Wait To Have More Children After The First One
When you get married, you get asked when you're having a kid, and when you have your first baby, you get asked when you're having your second one.
Some millennial parents seem to like that they had their first child young so they can wait to add to their family (but people might still ask them when they're going to have another one, of course). As the same girl from above continued on Reddit, "No rush for more babies yet! We can take our time with #2... or #3... etc. I think the older you get the more pressure there is (at least for women) to have them before you're 'too old'."
10 They Knew Their Relationship Was Solid And Mature
It's hard to bring a child into the world without starting from a solid, stable relationship or marriage. There are so many different opinions on parenting and starting a family, but this seems to be something that is generally agreed upon.
As one person said on Reddit, it seems like a good idea to have a solid relationship first: "People who don't have the maturity and communication skills to navigate tough discussions on very little sleep typically don't end up happily together. Not saying you or your fiancé aren't mature or anything - I just don't think people realize how drastically it will change a relationship."
9 They Wanted Kids For Sure
There are some millennial parents who just honestly wanted kids and knew that with 100-percent certainty.
One girl shared on Reddit, "I was 21 when I got pregnant... my SO was happy to raise the baby with me. The baby is now a year and a half and is an adorable little bundle of energy, and we've so far made it work pretty well. And we're happy." She continued "We had people tell us we were too young... but honestly motherhood suits me well. Most of parenthood is improvising and taking things as they come, and I'm pretty good at that." It's interesting to hear this POV because age has nothing to do with how ready or not you are. If you feel ready, then you are.
8 They Got Married And Wanted To Start A Family Young
First comes marriage, then comes the baby in the baby carriage, right? That's how the old saying goes and that can be true for millennial couples as well. It makes sense that some millennial couples make this commitment to each other and are ready and excited to start a family of their own.
As one woman, who is now 24 years old, shared on Reddit, this is what happened for her. She said, "I had a baby about 4 months ago (2 weeks after I turned 22). We're married and the pregnancy was planned. Overall, it's been a pretty positive experience. But I have no desire to have any more children."
7 They Didn't Think It Would Mess Their Life Up
As this woman's Reddit post from three years ago says, "I am 31 having my third baby, I was 17 with my first and 21 with my second. Having a baby young does not mean your life is over."
Some millennials might not feel that it's the right time for them to start a family, but other millennials feel the opposite way. They also seem to think that a baby will enhance their lives and be a really positive experience, and they don't think that it will ruin their lives. As this woman said, it doesn't mean that your life is over at all.
6 They Fell In Love
You might not be sure about having children... and then you fall deeply in love and you are now thinking totally differently. As this millennial posted on Reddit, it was her partner who made her see that she wanted to be a mother: "I'm 32; I NEVER wanted children, but then met my SO and he completely changed my mind."
It seems like this might be the case with other millennial parents, just like any parent from any other generation, of course. Falling in love and wanting to have your partner's baby is definitely a relatable experience that transcends age and generations.
5 They Didn't Plan It And Were Okay With That
As a now 27-year-old mom posted on Reddit, she and her partner didn't plan for their baby, but they wanted it and that was just fine with them. She explained, "I'm 23, will be turning 24 about a week before my due date, my SO and I aren't married, we didn't plan little squish, it just sort of happened. Kind of like our relationship; we fell into it."
It seems safe to say that some millennials end up parents because they didn't plan to have a baby, it just happened, and they thought, "Okay, let's do this." (Of course, that most likely happens to other age groups as well.)
4 They Had An Older Partner And Felt Ready
If you're a millennial and have an older partner, that could affect your decision to have a baby. That's what happened to this millennial mom who is now 28.
She posted on Reddit, "I'm 25 (although young I'm very stable). My SO and I are not married and tried for this baby for 8 months. We are 9 years apart in age (He is 34) and he has a 4-year-old from a previous marriage. We are definitely not rushing into marriage and it's something we both agree on. So we are not your atypical family but we love it and wouldn't change it!"
3 They Couldn't Wait Any Longer/Had Baby Fever
Sometimes you just know that you want to have a child and it's all that you can think about. It doesn't matter if you're 22 or 35, you want to be a mom.
As a now 25-year-old posted on Reddit, she just really wanted to have a kid and had baby fever. She wrote, "I'm young, 21, and also studying. But my husband has a good full-time job that can easily support us and baby, and he's only at the beginning of his career so his salary will only keep getting larger. We got engaged in September 2012 and that set off my baby fever, it was all I could think about, and I couldn't wait to start our family."
2 They Had No Debt And It Was Good Timing Job-Wise
A now 27-year-old posted on Reddit that the timing worked out for her and her husband to have their first child when they were a few years younger.
She said, "I'm 23, he's 24, awesome relationship, going on 2 years." She was about to go to school and her husband had one more year, but as she says, "it's actually kind of perfect. Had we waited, we both would have been new to our careers, and having to take time off for a baby wouldn't have been the greatest. Plus, right now we have zero debt. (His education is covered) Once we have a baby, I can apply for way more scholarships, and get geared-to-income housing and such."
1 They Simply Thought They Were Ready/It Was The Right Time
While people might not agree on whether there really is a right time to have a baby, some millennial parents seem to have found that, yes, it definitely was the right time for them. This seems to be a gut feeling that you have since it's such a personal decision.
According to one millennial parent's post on Reddit, sometimes things just fall into place: "We thought we were ready for it. We had the family support, the financial support, the emotional maturity and the desire to raise a family together. Now we're 7 years in with 2. Looking back, it turns out that we were indeed prepared, but it was very different than what we had mentally prepared for."