Differences in family norms for men and women across Europe

Research output: Contribution to journal/periodicalArticleScientificpeer-review


The authors examined double standards regarding divorce among parents with young children and regarding having children within nonmarital cohabitation across Europe. Whether people disapprove more of men or of women engaging in these behaviors is not a priori clear. The authors formulated arguments in both directions and expected double standards to vary cross-nationally by the level of socioeconomic gender equality in a country. They conducted multilevel analyses on a sample of about 44,000 individuals nested in 25 countries, obtained from the European Social Survey (2006). Double standards were measured with a split-ballot design. The findings indicated that men were generally more disapproved of than women when displaying the family behaviors under study. Overall, women endorsed both double standards, whereas men endorsed only the double standard regarding divorce. However, substantial cross-national differences in the double standards exist. The higher the level of socioeconomic gender equality, the larger these double standards in favor of women.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1097-1113
JournalJournal of Marriage and Family
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • SSCI


Dive into the research topics of 'Differences in family norms for men and women across Europe'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this