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Journal Article

The Impact of Family Disruption in Childhood on Transitions Made in Young Adult Life

Kathleen E. Kiernan
Population Studies
Vol. 46, No. 2 (Jul., 1992), pp. 213-234
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2174754
Page Count: 22

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Topics: Parents, Children, Men, Homes, Age, Childhood, Mothers, Cohabitation, Child psychology, Marriage
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The Impact of Family Disruption in Childhood on Transitions Made in Young Adult Life
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Abstract

From the life histories of a British cohort born in 1958 we examine whether the timing of educational, occupational, and demographic transitions differed for children who grew up with both natural parents, and children who experienced the dissolution of their parents' marriage, either through death or divorce, and whose remaining parent did or did not remarry. Bereaved children were no more likely than children brought up with both natural parents to make the transitions at an early age. There was one exception. Young people from step-families formed after death or divorce were most likely to leave home early, and for reasons of friction. The effects of parents' marital disruption differed between the sexes. Young men from step-families were more likely to form partnerships and become fathers at an earlier age than their contemporaries from intact or lone-mother families. For young women from both step and lone-parent families the propensity to form unions in their teens, to have a child at an early age and to bear a child outside marriage was higher than for those who came from intact families.

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