78 thousand Dutch men celebrate first Father’s Day

On Sunday, 18 June 2017, around 78 thousand men in the Netherlands are celebrating their first Father’s Day. They became first-time fathers during the past year at an average age of 32.6 years. According to Statistics Netherlands (CBS), the total number of fathers in the Netherlands exceeds 4 million.

[video: https://www.cbs.nlen-gb/video/63822c199efd4217a591b03ee582d32f]
(English subtitles available)

The total male adult population in the Netherlands (6.7 million) includes approximately 4.1 million fathers. For various reasons, there are fewer fathers than mothers (4.8 million): first-time fathers are on average older than first-time mothers; slightly more men than women are childless; male life expectancy is lower than female; and some children are born to unknown fathers.

Fathers and mothers in the Netherlands, 1 January 2017
15 to 24 yrs10.135.2
25 to 34 yrs293.1466.3
35 to 44 yrs697828.5
45 to 54 yrs953.61030.4
55 to 64 yrs874.5928.3
65 to 74 yrs756.4808.1
75 to 84 yrs382.3480.2
85 yrs or older103.4207.8

Fewer fathers in youngest and oldest age groups

With three and a half times as many mothers as fathers, the widest gap is found in the age category under 25. It shows that, on average, men start families at an older age than women. In the 25-34 age bracket, there are one and a half times as many mothers as fathers. The gap is narrower in the more advanced age groups up to 75 years but subsequently widens again, mainly due to the lower life expectancy among men. Beyond the age of 85, there are twice as many mothers as fathers.
Babies born in 2016 by age of father
 First childNext children
Younger than 25 yrs4.1711.183
25 to 29 yrs19.3610.779
30 to 34 yrs29.88931.876
35 to 39 yrs15.84131.529
40 to 44 yrs5.81113.096
45 to 49 yrs2.1094.41
50 yrs or older0.9111.555

Father on average three years older than mother

In 2016, the average age of first-time fathers was 32.6 years, three years older than the first-time mothers. The average paternal age among all births last year was 34.1 years, also three years older than the average mother. Nearly two-thirds of the 78 thousand new fathers were aged between 30 – 40, over 7 percent were between 40 – 44, while 1 percent were over age 50.

Fathers not always known

Not all fathers are included in the figures. Statistics Netherlands (CBS) only counts legal fathers, i.e. those who are married or in a registered partnership or who have officially acknowledged their child. In the year of birth, approximately 5 percent of fathers are unknown. In many cases, the father will still acknowledge paternity at a later date.