For lots of millennial moms, the image of the stay-at-home mom minding the children, tending to house work, and cooking up a storm is one that they might have only seen on TV — think Betty Draper of Mad Men. But that's not exactly who stay-at-home moms are anymore. Let's dial it back a notch: Who are millennials, exactly? Born roughly anywhere between 1978 and 1994, millennials are now America's largest generation, according to a Pew Research Center study that came out in April. So of those, how many millennial moms are stay-at-home moms? Everybody put your math hats on, because it's about to get all kinds of number-y up in here.
According to a 2015 State of Modern Motherhood Report compiled by BabyCenter, 83 percent of all new moms in the United States are millennial moms. A 2014 Pew Research Center survey revealed that stay-at-home moms were on the rise for the first time in 2012, after 30 years of a decline. In 2012, 29 percent of all moms classified as stay-at-home. OK, so percentages are all well and good — but what does this look like in terms of actual numbers and figures? The math gets a little convoluted from here.
A 2014 U.S. Census Bureau estimate indicated there are 85 million moms in the United States. That same census estimate pegged about 5 million of those mamas to be stay-at-home moms as of 2011. Okay, now we're getting somewhere! So, of those 5 million moms, how many of them are millennial moms?
Like most population data, it's a few years out of date, so the most recent figures most have to work with right now are from 2008. According to the 2010 National Vital Statistics Reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the birth rate in 2008 for women aged 20 to 24 was 103 births per 1,000 women. For women aged 25 to 29, the birth rate was just a touch higher at 115.1 births per 1,000 women. And for women aged 30 to 35, the birth rate fell to 99.3 births per 1,000 women. Yeah... still no help.
Unfortunately, that still doesn't boil down to a hard number of stay-at-home millennial moms — that is, until you look at a 2013 report by Weber Shandwick, a global public relations firm, called Digital Women Influencers: Millennial Moms. According to Weber Shandwick, one in five moms is a millennial mom, or about 22 percent. After doing the math using the 9 million total people in North America, that would come out to 1.98 million millennial moms in all of North America. Buried a little deeper in the report from Weber Shandwick is this little tidbit: 35 percent of millennial moms are "self-identified homemakers." For the purposes of this math puzzle, I'm saying those "homemaker" moms are likely also stay-at-home moms. (Though clearly there are stay-at-home moms who don't identify as homemakers, or maybe they do and they also work from home.)
Thus, the grand total of millennial moms who are stay at home moms works out to be just under 700,000 women — according to a 3-year-old PR report.
Wow, that was entirely too much math for me. If you're a stay-at-home millennial mom yourself, know that you're not a rare breed nor are you alone. But enough about math — it's time to wrangle the kids.