If Italian Men are Great Lovers, Why is the Italian Birth Rate One of the Lowest in the World?

When the Italians aren’t eating, sleeping or drinking, they’re fare l’amore. They’re making love.

This enriched race has maintained its reputation for being wonderfully attentive lovers. And they adore children. But somewhere along the line, something has gone amiss. Their virility may be in tact, but the Italian birth rate is now considered the lowest in the world.

The Italian Women Are Considered Very Beautiful

They are the voluptuous, generously endowed females who possess child bearing hips. They carry themselves with a deportment that screams confidence and the world is in awe of them. They share a space in the universities, behind elegant desks in tastefully decorated offices, in factories, and in homes and churches. They’re emerging from a history that has had them firmly depicted as large bodied matriarchs crooning to a brood of eight or ten young children who constantly mill around their knees.

Now, these women know their worth.

The Italian Man Illustrated As Macho

He is independent and Italy’s motor car fanatic, the dreamer of Ferrari and Maserati. He would rather give his right arm than endure the daily commute on public transport. His love extends to the images he beholds of his dream car and yet, curiously, he actually doesn’t drive anywhere. God forbid if he’s faced with a traffic jam and he’s forced to gesticulate whilst explaining the astonishing debacle to his boss on his mobile phone.

You see, the Italians would prefer not to drive their cars. They’re happier posing in front of them. The young bloods know that nothing draws attention more rapidly than the throaty exhaust of an idle Ferrari. Put them in front of a steering wheel of one of these graceful machines and they’re in obsessive, frenetic love. And they adhere. God Bless them, they’re only human.

Awareness In Tune Of Reality

But it’s time to raise the Italian awareness that fertility issues do not include the sweeping foreign lines and intimate mechanics of an elegant Lamborghini. Rather, it is beyond time to awaken the real reasons behind a lagging birth rate. With only eight births born to every 1,000 Italian residents, and these figures are according to EU statistics released only two years ago last July, this sum total represents less than half those born in the 1960’s. That’s a frightening statistic.

Is it the personal shift in the economics of a time worn tradition that mothers are older now and careers and independence come first? Maybe it is. And during the period 2002 through 2012, women of 40 and over were giving birth. In fact, the average age was almost 32 when Italian women were bearing their first child. Even at that age, there was controversy. They found they were damned if they did and they’re damned if they don’t.

Five Years On and …

Stride forward five years and the Health Ministry of Italy is making noises. Fertility or the lack of, as a woman grows older, waits for no man. And hasn’t that raised criticism? The backlash reflected a call for responsibility and for the Italian government to do something. “The government wants us to have children — and fast. Lots of us don’t want to, and in fact, we are still waiting … for creches, welfare, salaries, benefits.” Italian families are stalling and rightly so.

Many Italian women plan to give birth to two children on average but no man or woman is prepared to introduce a child into a country with no foreseeable future for them. When there is no clear strategy to leash unemployment, why would they?

There was also the slap in the face that had women who are working wondering if they would have a job to return to after they had their child. In fact, 1 in 4 women is still not guaranteed a return to her employment a year after giving birth.

With these options coupled with financial concerns, there remains the very real lack of childcare facilities. In a close knit country where family and immediate relatives are the links to independent child care, the traditional trend is now thinning rapidly for those who do not have that ready-made benefit. One out of two Italian families still rely on grandparents to babysit and those already parented families are providing daily care. These older grandparents are not going to be around forever. And whilst state subsidized pre-schools are another option, they’re overcrowded and thus, avoided if need be for the less struggling family.

What is it going to take for the people to repopulate? The Italian Government wants more Italians but the country’s people are less optimistic. They are waiting for a “miracle” or “a better country”.

What’s it going to be? For the globe will never be the same in a world that lacks Italians.

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