Transition Dynamics for Stay-at-Home Parenthood

Kristin Smith, U.S. Census Bureau
Jason Fields, U.S. Census Bureau

Strategies to balance work and family are at the forefront of concerns facing many American parents. Recently, the media has focused attention on "stay-at-home" parents--defined as married couples with children where one of the parents choose to be out of the labor force while the other parent works. This analysis uses prospective data from the 1996 panel of the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) to examine the dynamic nature of the stay-at-home parent family. Profiles of stay-at-home parents from the Current Population Survey (CPS) are presented as a comparison for the number and characteristics of these families using a similar definition, but a longer time frame. Using the SIPP, we look at characteristics of stay-at-home parents and their entries and exits over time from this family state. These transitions are placed in the context of the household and family characteristics prior to the change.

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Presented in Session 75: Balancing Work and Family