Cities are Great for Families

Why Families Should Move to Cities

When deciding to have children, many couples make the decision to leave the city and move to the suburbs in order to attempt to give their children a more positive upbringing. Many children are then raised in small towns where the people are relatively homogenous. They never learn that peoples lives can be different from their own and that there are other acceptable ways of living. While suburbs do tend to be safe and foster feelings of community, people who spend their whole life living here may end up with a narrow focus.

It occurred to me when I left for college that perhaps I was one of these people. I assumed that everything in my new city was dangerous and that the people were somehow different from the people in my town. I was wrong. Over time I realized that it was wrong to have looked down on cities just because I was not from one. The friends I have made who grew up in the city have a totally different, and I would argue more mature, worldview.

Growing up in a city does not make the same person achieve less in life, it simply shows that people live different lifestyles. Children who grow up in cities may be more tolerant of others who are unlike themselves because they are surrounded with such people. Rather than thinking that everyone is and upper middle class white person like I did (my town is 98.2% white), they will see people from different racial, ethnic and income groups. Having an appreciation of diversity is so important because it can allow you to be much more open as a person and less closed off from people and things that are unfamiliar to you. It is certainly important to make sure that children are raised in a safe and supportive environment, but most cities have neighborhoods that are very safe for children.

Over time I believe that the American ideal image of suburban life will begin to change. Since the financial crisis beginning in 2008, it appears that in fact suburbs have begun to lose their appeal and their population. There is no saying whether or not this trend will continue for sure, but I believe that people are realizing all of the benefits of city life and are deciding to leave the suburbs, with their families, for good.