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Report: single-parent families more common in the southern U.S.

Sometimes, through things like their parents getting divorced or their parents never marrying, a child ends up in a single-parent household. According to a recent analysis, single-parent households and other non-traditional family households are particularly common in southern states.

The analysis looked at census data to see how the various states in the U.S. differ when it comes to what percentage of a state's children live with both of their biological parents, with both of their parents being married. The study found that the percentages of children living in such traditional family households were, generally, substantially higher in states in the northern half of America than they were in states in the country's southern half. In a pretty substantial majority of southern states, well under half of the children in the state live in such a traditional family household. 

Why do you think southern states, generally, are seeing more children living in non-traditional households, like single-parent households?

As a note, the percentage of children living with both of their biological, married parents is higher here in Texas than it is in most of the other states in the country's southern half, according to the analysis. The percentage the analysis came up with for Texas was 45 percent. This percentage is higher than the percentage for any of Texas's neighbors (all of the states neighboring Texas fall into the range of 36 percent to 39 percent). 

Do you think non-traditional family households, like single-parent households, are less common in Texas than they are in most of the southern U.S.? If so, what do you think is behind this difference?

Living in a single-parent household can pose some challenges for a child. Thus, it is important for parents of children in such households to do what they can to help address these challenges and provide a supportive and stable environment for their children. One thing that can be an important part of this is taking steps aimed at ensuring that the child custody and child support arrangements reached in relation to the kids are well-suited for the kids' situation and are well-tailored to the kids' best interests. Family law attorneys can help single parents with child custody and child support issues.

Source: The New York Times, "The North-South Divide on Two-Parent Families," David Leonhardt, June 11, 2015

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