Objective This study investigates the role of residence (including shared residence), repartnering (including LAT relationships), and additional children (step- and half-siblings) on parenting in postdivorce families, and whether patterns differ by gender and type of parenting behavior.
Background Patterns of parenting are indicative of how parents redefine their roles and responsibilities after divorce and repartnering, but extant research has largely overlooked parenting across a full array of postdivorce families.
Method The analyses were based on data from Wave 2 of the New Families in the Netherlands survey, which was conducted among a random sample of divorced or separated heterosexual parents with minor children (N = 2,778).
Results Residence was highly relevant for parenting in regular care, leisure, irregular care, and influence in child-related decision-making. Repartnering and additional children had smaller effects and it mattered which type of parenting behavior was considered, but they were generally associated with lower parental engagement, except for decision-making influence. Gender differences were only found for decision-making influence, showing that variations in parenting across residence arrangements or between repartnered or single parents were more pronounced for mothers than fathers.
Conclusion Residence was more strongly related to parenting than repartnering, and the strength and nature of associations varied between parenting behaviors. Influence in decision-making stood out as a distinct parenting behavior, and also the frequency and obligatory nature of parent-child activities mattered.
- child custody
- family structure
- LIVING ARRANGEMENTS
- CHILD CONTACT