Fathers of children born to young urban mothers

J. B. Hardy, A. K. Duggan, K. Masnyk, C. Pearson

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38 Scopus citations


Fathers of babies born to a sample of urban mothers younger than 18 at delivery ranged in age from 14-50 and were, on average, 2-4 years older than the mothers. Among the adolescent women who had given birth to their first child, 28 percent of the partners of black women and 45 percent of the partners of white women were 20 years of age or older. The educational attainment of the fathers was very low, particularly among older whites. At approximately 15 months after the child's birth, 36 percent of the fathers were neither in school nor working. Three-quarters of the pregnancies among the young white mothers and 95 percent of those among the black mothers were unplanned, but only six percent of the white mothers and 16 percent of the black mothers were using a contraceptive at the time of conception. Only 16 percent of the fathers were living with or married to the mother of their child at 15 months after birth. About 90 percent of the fathers had spent time with their child during that period, but frequency of contact declined markedly with time. Overall, 20 percent of the fathers had children by other women.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)159-163+187
JournalFamily Planning Perspectives
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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