Study: Time With Mom More Important In Adolescence Than Younger Years

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A new study published in the Journal of Marriage and Family asks the question, "Does the amount of time mothers spend with children or adolescents matter?"

The answer may surprise many parents. The researchers found that the answer was no for young children (age 3 to 11), but yes for adolescents (age 12 to 18):

"In childhood and adolescence, the amount of maternal time did not matter for offspring behaviors, emotions, or academics, whereas social status factors were important. For adolescents, more engaged maternal time was related to fewer delinquent behaviors, and engaged time with parents together was related to better outcomes. Overall, the amount of mothers' time mattered in nuanced ways, and, unexpectedly, only in adolescence."

Sociologist Kei Nomaguchi was one of the authors of the study, and discusses the findings with Here & Now's Robin Young.


  • Kei Nomaguchi, associate professor of sociology at Bowling Green State University and co-author of the study, "Does the Amount of Time Mothers Spend With Children or Adolescents Matter?"

This segment aired on April 1, 2015.


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