It was only recently that family bloggers took over our social media channels – sharing snippets of their idyllic lives raising children and embracing parenthood.
And while ‘mummy bloggers’ are still popular, there’s a new trend taking over; the DINKs.
The acronym stands for dual income, no kids, and increasingly young couples are identifying as part of the growing community, boasting online about their luxury lives as a result.
Instead of spending their money on children, couples are sharing all the perks of putting off starting families – or forgoing it all together.
They spend lazy Sunday mornings in bed, brunching and doing couple’s workouts. They dine out at fancy restaurants and spend money on candy that they don’t have to share with little ones.
They spend lazy Sunday mornings in bed, brunching and doing couple’s workouts
Videos on TikTok under the DINK hashtag have amassed 164 million views, with thousands of comments from envious fans.
Speaking with MailOnline, ‘DINK’ creator Mollie said that while she and her partner don’t plan to stay childless forever, they’re embracing this chapter of their lives.
‘[Our days are] literally whatever we want it to look like, which is what we love so much and make the most of being ‘DINKS’.
‘If we want to spontaneously go out or stay away, we can, or if we just want to relax and do nothing all day just chilling at home, we can.’
Mollie noted that many of the DINK perks can still be achieved with children, but there’s one less factor to consider when organising.
‘We love peaceful weekend brunches out, lie ins, shopping, evenings out with friends and trips to art galleries or exhibitions which we have learned from family members can be a lot more challenging with children involved.’
Both she and her partner are only 25, and they hope one day to start a family, but they also appreciate why some DINKs have no intention of having children.
‘I think it’s just really important to consciously take in, recognise, appreciate and truly enjoy these years of ‘freedom’ before making such a huge and life changing decision. It’s a chance of showing gratitude for these years, living in the moment and recognising elements of our life that would drastically change or be compromised so much when and if we do have children in the future.
The acronym DINK stands for dual income, no kids, and increasingly young couples are identifying as part of the growing community, boasting online about their luxury lives as a result
There are several common themes between all the couples choosing this lifestyle.
One of the many creators who in a DINK marriage said: ‘I am a child free by choice person and love my life. I have so much time to dedicate to my hobbies, things that I enjoy, my sibling’s children.
‘I can have a cream sofa and know that it’s not going to get dirty and nothing in my home is sticky. I have plant babies, I have more money to travel with, more time to dedicate to my husband. It’s wonderful.’
She added: ‘Double income, no kid lifestyle is fantastic and I would recommend.
‘There are people like us who enjoy our lives and don’t feel the need to have tiny humans.’
It’s the latest trend to sweep the platform after a slew of economic and lifestyle trends that came before it.
And it speaks to changing societal trends and expectations
Instead of spending their money on kids, couples are sharing all the perks of putting off starting families – or forgoing it all together
Millennials are getting married later in life or forgoing it entirely, while home ownership is also happening at an older age for most people and birth rates are down.
On average, it costs up to £200,000 to raise a child to 18 in the UK, not including luxuries like vacations, gifts or hobbies.
Matt Benfield, a self-titled DINKWAD (dual income, no kids with a dog) from the US, told Business Insider that current generations simply ‘don’t have the money to support themselves and much less a child’.
‘They can barely afford rent. They can barely afford utilities, like grocery bills are through the roof. This idea of the DINKWAD is you have to just look out for yourself first before going for a kid or anything else.’
Another creator said: ‘We chose to stay as DINKs for the foreseeable future because there are other things we’d like to invest our money in and spend our money on before we have children.’
They dine out at fancy restaurants and spend money on candy that they don’t have to share with little ones
Some of the most common reasons to remain DINKs are; to travel more, to invest in property, to get a higher education, dedicate more time to hobbies or even something as simple as enjoying nice restaurants without anxiety.
DINKs are often the target of marketing efforts for luxury items as trips as they often have higher disposable incomes, but others say they’re using the time as DINKs to prepare for the future.
One said: ‘I want kids eventually, this won’t be our lives forever so we’re saving and getting ahead now.’
Another said: ‘Welcome to the DINK side of TikTok where we travel with only carry-on, go on backpacking adventures, tour wineries, sleep in on the weekends, go to the spa and enjoy a hot coffee while we enjoy our last few years without kids.’
DINK couples have also been sharing the pitfalls of the lifestyle too.
One woman, an academic and PhD student from the UK, said she struggles with feeling like she ‘shows up’ more for her friends’ successes than they do her own.
‘I’ve been in this type of relationship for the last five years. Everyone around me has been getting married, having kids, hitting these milestones. We’ve always turned up for people… It’s baby showers, gender reveals, we’d turn up with a smile and with presents all the time.
‘We’ve recently had our first milestone, getting engaged, and people with kids really did not turn out for us the way we’ve been turning up for them the last five years.’
Still, she said the perks of her lifestyle outweigh any cons. She and her partner have had extra time as a couple to truly understand one another’s love language, they’ve travelled almost all of Europe and have dedicated plenty of time to hobbies and education.
And while the DINK trend is rapidly taking off online, there are some doubters who aren’t thrilled with the term.
‘Y’all have to have a label for everything,’ one critic said.
‘So… just a normal married couple?’ another asked.