Living apart together at parents home (LATAP): a Mediterranean route to adulthood

Laura Bernardi, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research and Université de Lausanne
Anna Oppo, Università di Cagliari

Demographic research defines the transition to union primarily on the base of legal acts or residential moves. The exception, represented by the recent focus on unmarried couples living apart together, has however been discussed only for individuals who left the parental home. This paper defines a new type of couple living arrangement, “living apart together at parents’ home” (LATAP, concerning individuals in a couple relationship, who have not left the parental home. Drawing on a large set of 75 semi-structured interviews collected in Italy in 2005-6, we specify the events marking the transition to LATAP and how LATAP modulate the timing and forms of subsequent co-residential partnerships. By explicitly defining LATAP, we put attention on a living arrangement which is not only common (even though statistically invisible) but also key to understand union dynamics in countries with high shares of long-lasting co-residence between parents and children.

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Presented in Session 62: New methodological approaches to study the contemporary family