The family life course and health: partnership, fertility histories, and later-life physical health trajectories in Australia

O'Flaherty, Martin, Baxter, Janeen, Haynes, Michele and Turrell, Gavin (2016) The family life course and health: partnership, fertility histories, and later-life physical health trajectories in Australia. Demography, 53 3: 777-804. doi:10.1007/s13524-016-0478-6


Author O'Flaherty, Martin
Baxter, Janeen
Haynes, Michele
Turrell, Gavin
Title The family life course and health: partnership, fertility histories, and later-life physical health trajectories in Australia
Journal name Demography   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1533-7790
0070-3370
Publication date 2016-06-01
Year available 2016
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1007/s13524-016-0478-6
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 53
Issue 3
Start page 777
End page 804
Total pages 28
Place of publication New York, NY, United States
Publisher Springer New York LLC
Language eng
Abstract Life course perspectives suggest that later-life health reflects long-term social patterns over an individual’s life: in particular, the occurrence and timing of key roles and transitions. Such social patterns have been demonstrated empirically for multiple aspects of fertility and partnership histories, including timing of births and marriage, parity, and the presence and timing of a marital disruption. Most previous studies have, however, addressed particular aspects of fertility or partnership histories singly. We build on this research by examining how a holistic classification of family life course trajectories from ages 18 to 50, incorporating both fertility and partnership histories, is linked to later-life physical health for a sample of Australian residents. Our results indicate that long-term family life course trajectories are strongly linked to later-life health for men but only minimally for women. For men, family trajectories characterized by early family formation, no family formation, an early marital disruption, or high fertility are associated with poorer physical health. Among women, only those who experienced both a disrupted marital history and a high level of fertility were found to be in poorer health.
Keyword Fertility
Health
Life course
Marriage
Sequence analysis
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Institute for Social Science Research - Publications
HERDC Pre-Audit
School of Social Science Publications
 
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