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Teenagers ‘too keen’ to settle down

Parents are worried their teenage children may be too keen to settle down, a survey suggests.

In a recent poll of more than 2,000 people, the vast majority of 16 to 18 year-olds – around three quarters – said stability was something they wanted from life. Upon completing their education, 41 per cent of young participants wanted to go straight into a job. More than a quarter – 28 per cent – said their priority was to find a job which pays well.

Meanwhile, only 18 per cent of parents in the survey said that was the life they wanted for their children. In fact, 75 per cent claimed they wanted their children to start a family once they have had a lot of “life experiences” such as travel.

One in four parents worried their children would miss out on the chance to see the world if they focused on work immediately. Although more than half said they wanted their children to make time in their lives to travel before they thought about a family, only 19 per cent of young people planned on doing so.

Marriage was also important to the young people surveyed. As many as 63 per cent said they wanted to be married before they had any children.

Jackie Leiper is a panellist at the Centre for the Modern Family, a think tank founded by investment firm Scottish Widows who published the survey. She said the very different attitudes of the generations were probably rooted in the fact that the young people had “grown up in the shadows of a recession”.

Although the young people’s attitudes were “commendable”, Leiper insisted it was still important they are “encouraged and supported by their families and educators to help them reach their goals” whatever they may be.

Ideally, young people should be able to achieve what they want from life “without feeling under undue amounts of pressure and stress” she added.

The blog team at Stowe is a group of writers based across our family law offices who share their advice on the wellbeing and emotional aspects of divorce or separation from personal experience. As well as pieces from our family law solicitors, guest contributors also regularly contribute to share their knowledge.

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  1. Bridget Doman says:

    It’s all right wanting a job that pays well but that won’t be the case for quite a while, not for a few years and not until they have experience and knowledge at least under their belts. That could be experience in their chosen field or simply life experience. We really do need a full return to apprenticeships at 16, as they used to be, with 4 days at work gaining practical experience combined with one day and one evening at college, and for 5 years not 6 months – no one can learn the job properly in 6 months; even then, the continuation of doing the job gives further knowledge and experience, learning from superiors – look at careers in joinery and cooking for example.

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