The time has finally come for the Millennial generation to enter parenthood. As of 2015, 53 percent of Millennials already have children. That may sound scary because of the stereotypical image of a Millennial glued to their phone or taking a selfie. Luckily, this narcissistic stereotype is not a reflection of Millennials’ parenting skills, according to statistics. In fact, Millennials are shaping up to be great parents.
Millennials grew up in a time of rapid technological advancement and economic disturbance. This drastic change in environment is one of the reasons why Millennials get married later, buy houses later, and have children later than previous generations. Millennials are also first in place for the highest number of single-mother households and multiracial households. This changing dynamic of Millennial geography is leading to a difference in the way children are raised.
Family statistics about Millennials
- The Millennial median marriage age is 30 years old, compared to the baby boomers median marriage age 23 years old.
- The Millennial generation is the largest generation by population size in U.S. history! The Millennial population was at 79.8 million in 2016.
- Millennials exceed all other generations in the number of households with single mothers.
- Millennials also surpass all other generations in the number of multiracial households.
- A TIME magazine survey took a poll of more than 2,000 U.S. parents with children under 18 and Millennials were the highest percentage of stay-at-home parents. (Millennial stay-at-home parents: 23.2 percent; Gen X stay-at-home parents: 16 percent; Baby boomers stay-at-home parents: 22 percent)(The Millennial population was 79.8 million in 2016.)
- Millennial moms control 85 percent of the household purchases and have a U.S. spending power of $2.4 trillion.
- Millennials are often cited as the most socially compassionate generation. Many Millennials will opt to buy a product that benefits a charity over one that does not.
- Fifty percent of Millennial parents agree with the statement:I am raising my kids the way I was raised, while 28% disagree and 22% were neutral.
- In 2013, a research study revealed that Millennial moms spend about 17 hours per week on social media. I guess they are somewhat living up to their stereotype.
Ways Millennials are Raising Their Kids Differently
Millennials are using the internet for parenting advice
Millennials opt to search online for parenting advice instead of asking family and friends. This leads to high amounts of information for the Millennial parent to process and can often be overwhelming. Additionally, Millennials are less likely to live close to family or become friends with neighbors, so the internet becomes an extremely crucial source of parenting advice.
Millennials are spending more time with their kids
Millennial parents spend more time with their children now than ever before. Even though most Millennial parents are both working, research shows that they are still spending more time with their kids than past generations.
Millennials are drone parenting over helicopter parenting
Millennial parents are no longer ‘helicopter’ parenting, i.e. directing and scheduling for their children, like the baby boomers and Gen X may have done. Instead, Millennials are going with the ‘drone’ approach, meaning the parents are still ‘hovering, but they’re just following their children and responding to their kids’ actions. The ‘drone’ approach allows for more unstructured playtime as compared to the ‘helicopter’ approach which always had a structured/scheduled playtime.
Millennials are teaching their kids to be open-minded
Millennial parents are teaching their children to be open-minded and questioning. These are some of the most important characteristics that Millennials strive to pass on to their children. This is changing the way children are thinking and their approaches to problem-solving. Hopefully, this will lead to the newer generations becoming more empathetic, accepting, and reliable than ever before.
Millennials are using individualized discipline
Millennial parents are doing less spanking and are focusing more on tailored discipline, discipline that is specific to each individual child.
Millennial parents’ top concerns are changing
According to a study done in 2013, Millennial parents’ two biggest concerns are environmental issues and what their kids eat. In fact, 52 percent of Millennials say they closely monitor what their child eats and 64 percent say that the environment has become a top priority now that they are parents.
Millennial Parental Trends
Millennial parents are traveling globally with their children more than any other generation. As of 2017, 64 percent of Millennial families have taken at least one international vacation in the past year.
Millennial parents are very concerned with giving their children unique names. A TIME magazine study found that 60 percent of Millennial parents want to give their child a unique name, as opposed to only 35 percent of baby boomers and 44 percent of Gen-Xers.
Unsurprisingly, Millennials are the highest users of social media, given their upbringing in the technological boom. About 90 percent of Millennial parents use social media as compared to 59 percent of baby boomers and 76 percent of Gen-Xers. What is surprising though is that Millennial moms spend about 17 hours per week on social media. That’s basically a part-time job!