NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Effects of Child Health on Parents' Relationship Status

Nancy E. Reichman, Hope Corman, Kelly Noonan

NBER Working Paper No. 9610
Issued in April 2003
NBER Program(s):   HE   CH

We use data from the national longitudinal Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study to estimate the effect of poor child health on father presence. We look at whether parents live in the same household 12-18 months after the child's birth and also at how their relationships changed along a continuum (married, cohabiting, romantically involved, friends, or not involved) during the same period. We find that having an infant in poor health reduces the likelihood that parents will live together and increases the likelihood that they will become less committed to their relationship, particularly among parents with low socioeconomic status.

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Published: Reichman, Nancy, Hope Corman, and Kelly Noonan. "Effects of Child Health on Parents' Relationship Status." Demography (August 2004): 569-584.

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