Leaving Mum Alone? The Effect of Parental Divorce on Children’s Leaving Home Decisions

Letizia Mencarini, University of Turin and Collegio Carlo Alberto
Chiara Pronzato, Università degli Studi di Torino
Elena C. Meroni, Università di Padova

There is no general consensus on whether parental separation accelerates or postpones children’s transition to adulthood. The aim of this paper is to add to this literature by analyzing the effect of parental divorce on the timing of nestleaving of young adults. After providing descriptive findings using the recent Generations and Gender Survey (GGS) for five European countries (France, Georgia, Hungary, Italy, Russia), we assess the extent to which the associations between divorce and nest-leaving timing is masked by different effects. Our findings show that children who experienced divorce leave home at a faster rate, but the last child in the household – who would leave the mother alone – delays his/her departure.

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Presented in Session 131: Family Instability