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U.S. - distribution of children by family structure 1980-2019

In 2019, about 66 percent of children in the United States ages 0–17 lived with two married parents, down from 77 percent in 1980. On the other hand, about 4.4 percent of children ages 0-17 lived with their father only.

Distribution of child population in the United States from 1980 to 2019, by family structure

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Release date

September 2020


United States

Survey time period

1980 to 2019

Age group

0-17 years

Supplementary notes

In this table, “two parents” reflects all children who have both a mother and father identified in the household, including biological, step, and adoptive parents. Before 2007, “mother only” and “father only” included some children who lived with two unmarried parents. Beginning in 2007, “mother only” and “father only” refer to children for whom only one parent in the household has been identified, whether biological, step, or adoptive.

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Statistics on "Kids in the U.S."

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