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Early and Extensive Maternal Employment and Young Children's Socioemotional Development: Children of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth

Jay Belsky and David Eggebeen
Journal of Marriage and Family
Vol. 53, No. 4 (Nov., 1991), pp. 1083-1098
DOI: 10.2307/353011
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/353011
Page Count: 16
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Early and Extensive Maternal Employment and Young Children's Socioemotional Development: Children of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth
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Abstract

With the use of information pertaining to maternal employment, child care, and the socioemotional development of children from four to six years old whose mothers were studied as part of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, the effects of early and extensive maternal employment were assessed. Families and children were compared as a function of mother's employment across the child's first three years of life. After differences that existed between families at the time of children's births were controlled, it was found that children whose mothers were employed full-time beginning in their first or second year of life scored more poorly on a composite measure of adjustment than did children whose mothers were not employed during their first three years. Follow-up analyses revealed that this effect was restricted to the compliance component of the composite adjustment measure, and that children with early and extensive maternal employment experience were significantly more noncompliant than agemates without such early experience.

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