I want to be in my 40s and start a family with my husband, says a single mom in her 20s, and she hopes she can be a grandma.
“I think I’m going to have to marry someone, because I don’t have the resources to do that,” she told ABC News.
“And I think I’ll need to have kids too, but I don.
That’s just the nature of the beast.”
The story of a single mother and baker is becoming increasingly common in the U.S., with more women in their 40s living with the thought of having children or the thought that their fertility may be declining.
But many women struggle with fertility or worry about the long-term effects of aging.
The Associated Press has found that the rate of women living alone in the last three years has increased nearly 10% in the past decade, and a study published this month in the journal Aging Research found that older women with children were more likely to experience low self-esteem, lower self-efficacy, and poor self-perception.
“Many of us think that having a baby is a luxury that we can’t afford, but in many cases, it’s not,” said Elizabeth Smith, a professor at the University of Washington.
“People who have children tend to live longer than people who don’t.”
A lack of resources means that single mothers struggle to pay the bills.
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the average household income for a single parent in the United States is about $52,000.
“If you look at how many women we have in the military, what we are talking about is one of the lowest numbers we’ve ever had,” Smith said.
“There are no resources in the household for the average woman.”
The single mother of four has a career that doesn’t allow her to make ends meet.
“The way I live now, I’m working three jobs, but that’s not going to last,” she said.
A woman in her 40s who has lived with infertility for several years said she is living paycheck to paycheck.
“It’s hard to live paycheck to check.
The bills keep piling up.
It’s difficult,” said the woman, who asked that her last name not be used because she doesn’t want her family to be ostracized.
“At the end of the day, it all starts with my children.”
A study released last year found that while about half of American women report that they are currently pregnant, more than half of those who do say that they will never have a child.
The study also found that a large majority of women who have had children report that it was not their primary motivation for having children.
“We really don’t know if that is true, or if it’s just people having them to have them,” said Lisa Schofield, an associate professor of reproductive health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York.
“You don’t think of it as having kids just because you have kids.”
The U.N. Population Fund recently released a report on the growing number of single women living with infertility and the challenges they face.
The report found that nearly two-thirds of single mothers in their 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s had difficulty paying their bills, and one-third reported that their health had declined in recent years.
The majority of those single women who were living with fertility had no children.
About half of all single mothers reported they had no plans to have children, and only 10% said they would be able to start a child in their lifetime.
The AP has identified the women interviewed in this story through a Freedom of Information Act request and obtained the birth certificate for all of them.
The woman said she would have to raise a child by herself and said that if she was able to find a partner to help pay for her care, that could be financially challenging.
The women interviewed for this story did not want to use their names because they did not have a birth certificate, and because they fear reprisal.
They spoke to ABC News on the condition of anonymity because they feared losing their jobs or facing discrimination in the workplace.
Some of the single mothers who were interviewed by the AP said that the challenges of raising children without a partner were hard to bear.
“Some of us are in very poor financial straits,” said Sarah, who gave only her first name.
“But there are other people who are really struggling, who are struggling with the costs of raising a child.”
Smith said that she also had to juggle paying bills with a career.
“With all of the expenses I’m facing, it has really impacted my ability to do the things that I want and that I’m passionate about,” she added.
“In a way, it makes it very hard to keep the kids together.”
The AP spoke to dozens of women and their families across the country and across several demographics, from the poorest