After Marriage, How Long People Wait to Have Kids

First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in the baby carriage. Sometimes.

When a couple gets married, they are almost always faced with the inevitable pester from friends and family: So when are you having kids? The older you are, the more pressing the question seems to be. Ticktock, ticktock.

Instead of hemming and hawing, you can just show them this chart instead. It shows how long people usually wait to have kids after getting married.

Age at Marriage vs. Time to Have a Kid

If they do have kids, married people usually have their first one during the first six years of marriage.

It’s based data from the 2015-2017 National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG), which is run by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The circles are sized proportionally to estimated counts, but pay more attention to the overall distribution than on the individual points.

In the younger years, you see longer times in between marrying and having a kid, some nearly a decade. But once people get into their thirties, there’s less time to spare.

There are social reasons of course, but for women, it’s also biological, as shown below.

Pregnancy Outcome by Age of Mother

Getting pregnant can mean different things depending on where you are in life. Maybe pester newlyweds less.

AGE GROUP

15-19

20-24

25-29

30-34

35-39

40+

A higher percentage of pregnancies end in a miscarriage or stillbirth at older ages.

Miscarriage

Stillbirth

Ectopic

Abortion

Cesarian

Vaginal

AGE GROUP

15-19

20-24

25-29

30-34

35-39

40+

Miscarriage

A higher percentage of pregnancies end in a miscarriage or stillbirth at older ages.

Stillbirth

Ectopic

Abortion

Cesarian

Vaginal

In case you’re unfamiliar, the above is a mosaic plot, also known as a Marimekko diagram. The width of the columns represents the percentage of pregnancies for the age group. The height of each stacked rectangle represents the percentage of pregnancies that ended with corresponding outcome, in a given age group. The full range of both dimensions is 0% to 100%.

Become a member.
Get unlimited access to tutorials, courses, and practical guides. Make great charts.

Join Today

Membership

This is for people interested in the process of creating, designing, and exploring data graphics. Your support goes directly to FlowingData, an independently run site.

What You Get

  • Learn to make any chart with instant access to step-by-step tutorials.
  • Download source code and files to use with your own data.
  • In-depth courses on visualization to learn at your own pace.
  • Stay up-to-date with additional resources and visualization tools.
  • Get the members-only newsletter.

Favorites

Visualizing the Uncertainty in Data

Data is an abstraction, and it’s impossible to encapsulate everything it represents in real life. So there is uncertainty. Here are ways to visualize the uncertainty.

Best Data Visualization Projects of 2016

Here are my favorites for the year.

The Most Unisex Names in US History

Moving on from the most trendy names in US history, …

Cuisine Ingredients

What are the ingredients that make each cuisine? I looked at 40,000 recipes spanning 20 cuisines and 6,714 ingredients to see what makes food taste different.