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In it, she has cited World Bank data which pointed to how greatly women’s educational achievements are surpassing those of men: But it’s not just university education that’s making women wait.

A recent multi-country study from sub-Saharan Africa found that even when women themselves hadn’t received more formal education, they were likely to delay marriage if more educated women around them were doing so.

In her conception, the term relates to both genders and is at root economic.

In many places—such as Egypt, where some of Singerman’s research has focused—marriage is just too expensive for young people to manage, while having kids outside of that formal union isn’t yet socially acceptable.

Marcia Inhorn, a professor of anthropology and international affairs at Yale University, convened a conference on the theme of waithood in September.

The umbrella term can refer to delaying other decisions, such as moving out of one’s parent’s house, or taking on other trappings of adulthood like home ownership.“One of the global trends that was really seen throughout many of the papers was the delay in marriage, especially among more educated classes of people, and especially for women,” she says.

(There’s even a term for it: hypergamy.)Whether by choice, accident, or a combination of the two, more and more educated and ambitious women are finding themselves unable to find the mate that they want at the time they’re searching. The kind of men they are searching for—available to embark on family life, ready to commit, and with similar levels of education and ambition In the US population as a whole, for the time when the egg-freezing research was carried out, there were 7.4 million university-educated American women aged between 30 and 39, but only 6 million university-educated American men. But a bigger solution to the issue might be a paradigm shift, the academics suggest.But many want, if not marriage, then at least “a very secure, very committed, monogamous reproductive partnership” before they bring children into the world, Inhorn says. We (Oath) and our partners need your consent to access your device, set cookies, and use your data, including your location, to understand your interests, provide relevant ads and measure their effectiveness.Smith-Hefner was struck by some problems faced by those following that path.The young women were trying to fit so much into a small window of opportunity that it sometimes seemed impossible.

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