In Japan, like in other post-industrialized societies, expectations for “successful” parenting are much higher today than they were three or four decades ago (for the case of Germany, see Bertram and Spiess 2011).
Additionally, raising a child has become more costly in terms of both time and money. These elevated costs, together with the rising opportunity costs for women opting for motherhood, are strongly correlated with the fertility rate in Japan (Ogawa et al. 2009). As the country’s low fertility rate is considered a major demographic problem by policy makers, it is imperative that they better understand parents, particularly those with young children who require a high degree of care.