Some are happy to be married without children

JOHOR BARU: While marriage has often been traditionally associated with starting a family, some young couples here are opening up to the idea of remaining childless.

They said this is because they are well aware that having children is a huge, lifelong responsibility that should only be undertaken upon very careful consideration.

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Engineer M. Shasirina, 29, said she and her husband decided not to rush into having children, adding that they would only consider doing so when they are fully prepared.

“Before getting married, we planned to start having children after the third year of our marriage. However, we later decided not to stress ourselves too much by setting a deadline.

“After much thought, we are open to the idea of remaining childless.

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“This is not to say that we have shut the door on having children at all. We may consider having them in the future,” she said in an interview yesterday.

Shasirina, who got married one year ago, cited financial responsibilities, mental health concerns and career as some of the reasons the couple decided to postpone their plans for kids.

“Both my husband and I work in Singapore, meaning that we cross the border five days a week.

“If we were to have children, we would be too tired to spend quality time with them, and one of us would have to sacrifice our career.

“I don’t mind leaving my job to be with my children, but it has to be a decision that I make for myself and not one that is made out of guilt or obligation,” she said.

Shasirina said the availability of information and rising awareness on mental health had also made the couple think deeply whether it was necessary to have children.

Echoing her sentiment is businessman Micheal Yeap, 32, who got married two years ago.

“I don’t think that we should be having children for the sake of fitting into societal norms as it is such a major, life-changing decision.

“We want to spend some time living as husband and wife before even considering having children.

“For me, this is important as we will need to act as a team to raise our children in the future if we decide to have them,” he said.

Yeap said he and his wife had also decided to only start planning for children once they have enough savings to raise a kid up to their tertiary education.

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Couples , Marriage , Children , Family , Fertility Rate


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