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Family Life

Different Types of Families: A Portrait Gallery

Nuclear Families

  • Approximately half of all families with youngsters under age 18 are composed of two biological parents and their children.

Single-Parent Families

  • Single-parent families make up 27 percent of households with children under age 18.

Cross-Generational Families

  • Approximately 670,000 families with children under age 18 have a family member age 65 or older living with them.
  • Roughly 2.5 million children under age 18 live with one or both parents in their grandparents’ home.

Adoptive/Foster Families

  • Approximately 120,000 children are adopted each year.
  • 6.3 children per 1,000 live in out-of-home foster care.

Never-Married Families

  • About 1.5 million unmarried couples have at least one child under age 15.

Blended Families

  • About 20 percent of children in two-parent households live in blended families.

Grandparents as Parents

  • Approximately 1.3 million children under age 18 live with their grandparents.

Same-Sex Parent Families

  • Some 2 million children have parents who are gay, lesbian or bisexual.
Last Updated
Adapted from Caring for Your Teenager (Copyright © 2003 American Academy of Pediatrics)
The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.
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