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Mother's relationship to child (self-reported)

Codes and Frequencies

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PEMOMTYP is a variable that indicates whether a person's mother is a biological, step, or adoptive parent.

Since 2007, the CPS has collected detailed data on family relationships. If a household member resided with his or her mother, the interviewer recorded the mother's line number (PELNMOM) and whether the mother is a biological, step, or adoptive parent (PEMOMTYP). Similar data were collected for fathers (PELNDAD and PEDADTYP). Spouses (ASPOUSE) and cohabiting partners (PECOHAB) are also identified.

These variables are reported as is and may need additional cleaning by researchers. In particular, when a child resides with one biological parent and that parent's cohabiting partner, the child is usually reported to live with only one parent. Researchers can use the information on the father's cohabiting partner (PECOHAB) to identify those cohabiting stepmothers who are not included in PELNMOM and PEMOMTYP. Married stepmothers are always identified by PELNMOM and PEMOMTYP.

PEMOMTYP was drawn from the final CPS interview, conducted 2-5 months before the ATUS interview. This variable was not collected at the time of the ATUS interview.


PEMOMTYP is consistent in all years for which it is available. These variables were not collected in the 2020 CPS or later (see YEAR_CPS8).


  • All persons in the household at the time of the CPS interview.


  • 2007-2020