Extended households and the life course of young mothers: Understanding the associations using a sample of mothers with premature, low birth weight babies

Rachel A. Gordon*, Lindsay Chase-Lansdale, Jeanne Brooks-Gunn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

51 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper examined whether the greater average schooling and employment, and lower parenting competence, of young mothers who reside with adult relatives reflect preexisting differences versus potential causal mechanisms. The sample included 554 young mothers (ages 13 to 25; nearly two thirds African American) from the Infant Health and Development Program (IHDP) a random-assignment intervention study of premature, low birth weight babies followed 8 times from birth to age 3. Ordinary least squares, fixed-effects, and random-effects models indicated that young mothers of low birth weight babies sorted into extended households based on preexisting characteristics that were correlated with their lower parenting skills and knowledge. In contrast, coresidence predicted greater schooling or employment across models, with some variations for different subgroups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1013-1038
Number of pages26
JournalChild Development
Volume75
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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