Read the section in the book on pages 47 to 49 about the effects of the decline in fertility, especially regarding the growth of child-centredness. Now study the extract below and complete the task that follows:

In November 2006, the Liverpool Victoria Building Society estimated that the cost of raising a child from birth to the age of 21 now stands at £180000, and this cost has risen at a faster rate than property prices.

They estimate that the first year of their child’s life will set parents back nearly £8000, but the teenage years work out the cheapest, with those aged 12-18 costing their parents less than £7000. The most expensive, however, are University years, costing almost double this figure, following the introduction of tuition fees.

The average UK household will pay £16000 on their child’s food, £12000 on clothing, £11000 on holidays, £9000 on hobbies and toys and £5000 on pocket money.

Explain what implications these facts might have for:

a) family relationships

b) patterns of childbirth

c) the dependency ratio