The cover of last week’s TIME magazine (March 12, 2012) boasted “10 Ideas That Are Changing Your Life.” As I read about Idea #1, how living alone is the new norm, I was surprised to come across these words:
“According to 2011 census data, people who live alone–nearly 33 million Americans–make up 28% of all U.S. households, which means they are now tied with childless couples as the most prominent residential family type.”
So, by my math, at least 56 percent of us don’t have children, and similar figures were shown for Canada, Italy, Britain, Sweden, Japan, Russia and South Africa. Whether we are single or part of a couple, we are more prevalent than traditional nuclear families.
Boy, it sure doesn’t feel like it, does it?
I have to say I was surprised to see these figures. But as childless, childfree, unchilded people (whatever you want to call us) we are, in fact, the norm.
Knowing this is not going to change people’s attitudes, at least not just yet, but if anyone should tell you that being childfree isn’t normal, feel free to whip out these numbers and set them straight.