Women who were separated from their mums in their early childhood on average give birth to their first child two years earlier than those in constant contact, a new study has found.
The study looked at nearly 4,500 women from a variety of backgrounds and locations in the UK.
The findings, by experts from Newcastle University, also showed that the duration of breastfeeding, regularly moving house and contact with their dad all affected women’s future families. However, the researchers discovered that when separation was more long-term or permanent, that likelihood of early motherhood disappeared.
“Interestingly, where the separation from the mother was more permanent, such as over 24 months, the effect goes away,” said psychologist Dr Daniel Nettle, lead author of the study. “The child whose mother has been away for 24 months or more is likely to have been adopted into a more stable family. This suggests that it is the security of attachment which has important effects on the developing child,” he explained.
How much influence do you think your mum had on when you decided to have your first baby?