The days of large families may be coming to an end according to data from the Office of National Statistics.

Parents with three or more children now make up only 14 per cent of British families, while one-child families have increased from 42 to 47 per cent in the last 16 years.

Much of this change may be explained by the move away from traditional family structures, the increase in people attending higher education courses or pursuing careers, and the increasing number of women having children later in life.

Despite this, the UK still has more families with three or more children than most other countries in the European Union.

Karen Gask, who compiled the ONS survey, said: “This is generally because of different family-friendly policies across Europe. It’s also difficult for women to balance childcare with working.

“We know that in Scandinavian countries there’s much more focus on family-friendly policies and making sure those parents can work and spend time with their children.

“There’s a tendency in the southern countries that women have to choose between a family and work, and it is harder for them to balance the two.”

The difficulties in balancing family and financial stability means that many have to limit the number of children they have to avoiding stretching their paycheque too far.

Are you intending to stop at one? Would you prefer to have more children if you could afford it, or do you love parenting an only child? Please share your thought by commenting below.

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