A number of different terms have been used to refer to households where only one parent, usually the mother, cares for dependent children: unmarried mothers, lone mothers, single mothers, one-parent families. “Lone parent” usually implies living alone without a partner but with dependent children. “Single parent” is more suggestive of marital status, that is, never married. Among one-parent families, the term lone mother today still constitutes a central factor, both for historical and sociodemographic reasons. First, the one-parent figure has historically coincided with that of the “unmarried mother.” The considerable numerical disproportion between “lone” mothers and fathers in favor of the former should also not be forgotten. This may be explained by multiple factors: the tendency to give custody to the mother in case ...

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