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Stress and Age at Menarche of Mothers and Daughters

Citation

Campbell, Benjamin C. & Udry, J. Richard (1995). Stress and Age at Menarche of Mothers and Daughters. Journal of Biosocial Science, 27(2), 127-34.

Abstract

The hypothesis that psychological stress during early childhood leads to advanced reproductive maturation was assessed using data from the California Childhood Health and Development Study. Regression analyses failed to indicate that bed wetting, nightmares or thumb-sucking at age 5 predict age at menarche, regardless of controls for mother's age at menarche. Among socioeconomic variables suggested as contextual stressors measured at age 9-11 only mother's education was a significant predictor of daughter's age at menarche, though its effect is trivial compared to mother's age at menarche. Path analysis on a subsample of the subjects failed to demonstrate the hypothesised indirect effect of mother's age at menarche on daughter's age at menarche acting through early marriage and marital dissolution. These results cast doubt on the theory that early childhood stress is the key to divergent reproductive strategies among females based on the timing of reproductive maturation.

URL

http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/s0021932000022641

Reference Type

Journal Article

Journal Title

Journal of Biosocial Science

Author(s)

Campbell, Benjamin C.
Udry, J. Richard

Year Published

1995

Volume Number

27

Issue Number

2

Pages

127-34

Reference ID

456