Recession blamed for smaller families

Almost two in five mothers have blamed the recession for their decision not to have any more children.

Of the 39% of women who decided against increasing the size of their families, one in five were adamant that a further pregnancy had been ruled out.

The survey of 713 mothers found that more than a third (36%) had borrowed from families or friends over the last six months.

While one quarter are depending more heavily on credit cards, 7% borrowed from a moneylender.

Younger mothers are more likely to have borrowed from friends and family, with 70% of those in the 18-24 age group doing so.

The survey by Amárach Research for, a leading pregnancy and parenting website, reflects similar findings in the Central Statistics Office Quarterly National Household survey.

The CSO survey found 80% of households are cutting back on back on spending due to the recession.

According to the survey by, mothers are concerned about more pay cuts and tax increases.

Job losses are a huge concern — almost one in five mothers or their partners have been made redundant in the last year.

Almost two-thirds (59%) of mothers have made a strong effort to cut spending in the last six months.

Nine out of 10 mothers (93%) mothers have reduced their leisure spending, while 81% have cut back on household spending.

The Marketing to the Baby Boom survey shows how it is costing more to run a home. Household expenditure has increased for seven out of 10 households (71%) — up 11% since the last survey in July 2011. Food and grocery spending has increased for 58% of mothers.

The survey also found that over half (52%) of mothers aged between 18 and 24 have missed a loan repayment in the past 12 months.

Almost half (46%) of families have had their income reduced due to pay cuts in the past year, mainly affecting those aged over 35.

Managing director of, Rose Kervick, said that, after health, managing household finances is the next greatest concern among young parents.

“The survey shows that mothers are very squeezed by the recession and their biggest fear is uncertainty about the future,” she said.

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