Experiences and effects of life events. Evidence from two Australian longitudinal studies

Social security Poverty Social issues Australia

This article examines particular types of events that may occur at different stages of life and may have consequences for the wellbeing of those involved such as serious personal injury/ illness, serious injury/illness or death of a family member, relationship changes, and changes related to financial matters.
Events spark change, but change is also an unavoidable part of life. Some key events are associated with developmental milestones that at a broad level cover infancy, toddlerhood, middle childhood, adolescence, youth, and middle and old age. For example, in many societies, a child enters primary school, progresses to secondary school, and then perhaps engages in further training or enters tertiary education, hopefully finding productive employment as a result of such endeavours.
The achievement of these various milestones is generally associated with further transitions,such as leaving the family home and forming an intimate live-in relationship. Despite increasing delays in partnership formation in the post– World War II era, most young adults eventually become parents, typically within a marriage. A small minority of Australian women have one or more children without having lived with the child’s father. Some couples separate, and some separated individuals find new partners.

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