Letter: Child choices

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The Independent Online
IT IS sad that there are so many nice, capable unmarried women in their thirties who would like to marry and have children but who feel they may have missed the boat. The reason for this situation is far more complex than Suzanne Moore's simplistic, accusation analysis allows.

The feminists rightly persuaded women to be more career-minded and to achieve some financial independence. But there is more involved than career- mindedness. Social changes since the Seventies have had profound effects on the 18-39 age group that must be taken into account. My generation did not "shack up" before marriage - let alone with the first person who came along. Young people could afford to share accommodation in city areas where there was a great deal of socialising because working hours allowed a decent balance between work and play.

"Shacking up" takes people out of circulation at a time when they ought to be playing the field. High rents have forced many young people to stay on with their parents or to live in uncentral areas. This takes them out of circulation. And the macho business culture of excessively long working hours takes conscientious people out of circulation.

DR ANNE-CAROLE CHAMBER

Ross and Cromarty, Scotland

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