Valid reasons to delay parenthood

I agree with Senior Minister of State Josephine Teo's observation that "you do not need much space to have sex" ("Minister's rejoinder to 'no flat, no child' belief"; yesterday).

However, it is a very different ball game compared with planning for and raising a child.

There are valid reasons for young couples to want to get a flat of their own before having children.

First, there may be space constraints in their parents' homes, so living there first may not be an option for many couples.

Second, it can be very stressful moving house and getting one's home renovated during pregnancy or immediately after childbirth.

So, it is understandable if couples want to ensure their new homes are ready to move into before they start having children.

Delaying parenthood for these reasons actually reveals careful planning by couples.

It is not surprising that love is not considered a priority by young couples these days, as the Singapore education system, high cost of living and raising a child, and high level of competition here have created a very pragmatic mindset.

Adam Reutens-Tan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 13, 2016, with the headline 'Valid reasons to delay parenthood'. Print Edition | Subscribe