One in 5 US women have kids with different dads

Last Updated: Apr 04, 2011, 09:22 AM IST

New York: One in five women in the US have children with different fathers, according to a study.

Researchers found that this trend was higher in minority groups and women with low income and education backgrounds, a daily reported.
The data was taken during a 27-year period from nearly 4,000 American women.

Author Cassandra Dorius of the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research presented her findings to the Population Association of America.

"Women with children from multiple fathers tend to be disadvantaged compared to other moms. They are more likely to be under-employed, to have lower incomes, and to be less educated," Dorius said.

This type of family structure can lead to lot more stress for everyone involved, because the women need to "juggle the demands and needs" of more than one dad, she said.

"Everyday decisions are more complex and family rules are more ambiguous. Families need to figure out who lives with whom and when, who pays for things like clothing, who is responsible for child support," she said.

This type of family structure was more common among minority women, with 59 percent of African-American mothers and 35 percent of Hispanic women. Only 22 percent of white mothers reported children with more than one father.

Katherine Stamps Mitchell, an assistant professor of human ecology and sociology at Louisiana State University, said a lot of young women were choosing to become mothers before marriage.

IANS