Is maternal employment beneficial to the child socio-emotional wellbeing? This study examines whether, under which circumstances, and through which mechanisms maternal employment influences the socioemotional well-being of children living with a lone mother in Scotland.
Previous research has shown that children who do not live with both of their parents fare worse on a variety of outcomes. However, less is known about the factors that contribute to the negative effect of family structure.
Using Growing Up in Scotland data, this study reveals that children of working lone mothers are less at risk of having severe socioemotional problems, particularly if their mothers work in medium–high occupational positions. Higher levels of household income and the greater psychological well-being of working mothers partly explain the positive effect of maternal employment.
This paper was published in the Demographic Research Journal on 18 December 2020 and can be read in full online: