Discussion Paper no. 04-06


This paper examines the polarization by socio-economic status of Canadian women’s timing of and trajectories to motherhood. The study uses data gathered through the 2001 GSS on Family History and focuses on women born from 1922 to 1980. Women with high social status are more likely to delay their entry into motherhood and to follow trajectories that include graduation from post-secondary education. In contrast, women with low social status are more likely to follow shorter routes, often bypassing graduation from post-secondary education, regular work, or marriage, and consequently start motherhood at younger age.