The pandemic is halting some women’s childbearing plans

Connecting the Dots – #YesThisIsAnArtsStory Repost from The Lily

Sydney Page | 30 January 2021

At the start of 2020, Tara Finley and her husband were hoping to get pregnant with a third baby. Now, they’re seriously considering scheduling a vasectomy.

Finley, 31, lives in Santa Barbara, Calif., with her husband and two sons, ages 18 months and 3. She is adamant about maintaining their compact family of four — a complete reversal from her stance less than a year ago.

“We always planned on having three kids,” Finley said. Then 2020 happened, and “it felt like everything that could go wrong did.”

Finley, who works at a media company, was furloughed early in the pandemic, and although she has started working full time again, “every single sense of power that I didn’t even realize could be taken away from me was, and that is such a scary feeling.”

In a time of tremendous uncertainty, getting pregnant — or not — is one of the very few things Finley feels she has control over, she said. “Making sure that we don’t add more kids to our plate” became a top priority.

For Finley, the tense political climate, the pandemic and, perhaps most significantly, the ensuing financial toll collectively compelled her to rethink all previous pregnancy plans.

“I don’t know if we’re ever going to catch up to the sense of comfort we used to have. We’re now going to be on a paycheck-to-paycheck scramble,” Finley explained, adding that the compounding stresses of working remotely full time and caring for her children full time solidified her desire to stop having kids.