Premarital Pregnancy and Its Influences on First Marriage for Chinese Women

Xingshan Cao, University of Toronto

Premarital pregnancy has enormous impacts on individual woman's life course trajectory. Many studies have reported increasing changes in premarital sexual behaviors in China. However, no systematic study has been done with regard to premarital pregnancy and its consequences on Chinese women. Using the 2001 China National Family Planning and Reproductive Health Survey data, this study focuses on self-reported premarital pregnancies among Chinese women and their consequences. We found that the likelihood of premarital pregnancy is close related to women's residence, education, and the macro socioeconomic environment. We also examine women's transition to first marriage after their premarital pregnancies. We found that the average age at first marriage for women with premarital pregnancies is significant higher than that of all other women. The timing of first marriage to a large extent depends not only on women's ages at pregnancy but also on the outcomes of pregnancies.

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Presented in Session 146: Reproductive Health in Developing Countries II