In Your OpinionIn Your Opinion

Is parenthood a sacrifice young Singaporeans aren’t willing to make?

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Children can invoke feelings of joy, gratitude and fulfilment, but also thoughts of fatigue, financial stress, and lack of personal time?

Synopsis: Every second Monday of the month, The Straits Times takes a hard look at social issues of the day with guests.

For the first time ever, the resident total fertility rate (TFR) dropped below 1, hitting 0.97 in 2023. Singapore's replacement TFR rate meanwhile stands at 2.1 - the level of fertility at which the population replaces itself from one generation to the next.

The instincts to procreate, it seems, are varied and personal, as hosts Sarah Koh and Aqil Hamzah - journalists from The Straits Times - find out from their guests. 

For Ms Charisse Grace Agustin, 29, being childless was a decision that she made at the age of 18, while still a junior college student.

Mr Sng Shan En, 27, on the other hand, is already a father to a three-year-old, with plans for more children in the future if his wife wants them.

Highlights (click/tap above):

2:00 The advantages to having children younger rather than older

6:00 Heartwarming moments vs. material sacrifices of having children

10:17 The future regret in not having children

16:22 Would the government’s push for babies change your decision?

18:46  Is parenting a 50/50 effort between mom and dad?

21:04 Would higher cash incentives nudge more towards parenthood?

Produced by: Aqil Hamzah (, Sarah Koh (, Lynda Hong, Ernest Luis & Hadyu Rahim

Edited by: Hadyu Rahim

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