Intergenerational Contact and the Life Course Status of Young Adult Children


Department of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Utrecht University, P.O. Box 80140, 3508 TC Utrecht, The Netherlands (


This study examined how the life course status of young adults—whether they have a romantic partner and whether they have children—is related to how often they have contact with their parents. Hypotheses were tested using recent data from the Netherlands Kinship Panel Study. The main sample included 1,911 young adults between the ages of 18 and 34. Results suggest that young adults’ entrance into cohabitation and marriage is associated with less face-to-face contact with parents. Young adults with children of their own tend to see their parents more frequently than young adults without offspring. Findings are congruent with the family life course perspective, contending that family relationships are related to the life course status of individual family members.