New Partners, New Children in Sweden

Jennifer Holland, University of Wisconsin at Madison
Elizabeth Thomson, University of Wisconsin at Madison

The increasing incidence of childbearing with more than one partner is a feature of the Second Demographic Transition with perhaps the greatest implications for family life. It is a phenomenon that may be significant in the maintenance of fertility levels very close to replacement. In this paper, we use data from the 2000 Swedish Level of Living Survey to update research on stepfamily childbearing. We model parity-specific birth risks as a function of the union status of prior births to test the hypothesis that birth risks are elevated if the child is the first in a new union. We consider differences in stepfamily childbearing by whether prior children were born in a prior coresidential partnership or to couples who did not live together. We also show how the age of the youngest stepchild alters differentials in birth risks between couples with and without stepchildren.

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Presented in Session 127: Social Demographic Aspects of Fertility in the Western World