This book examines the reasons why children ultimately leave home to live on their own and how the pattern has changed throughout the 20th century. The authors make use of data from the National Survey of Families and Households to: construct patterns for when children leave home; and establish the most important criteria for leaving home amongst different groups in the United States - men, women, blacks, hispanics, whites, and different religious groups and social classes.
Chapter 2: Out of the Nest
Out of the Nest
A complex series of changes has transformed the lives of Americans as they make the transition from being a child in their parental home to having adult work and family roles. These go beyond the long-term decline and recent increase in age at leaving home, coupled with the continued increase in nonfamily living in young adulthood, that we documented in Chapter 1. Much more dramatically, the 20th century has seen early marriage and parenthood emerge as the central transitions to adulthood and then move abruptly off center. During the baby boom after World War II, ages at family formation dropped into the low 20s for both men and women; age at parenthood hit a historic low. Following the ...