College-educated Asian stay-at-home mothers in U.S.

Date
2012-01-01
Authors
Ju, Lijin
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Stephen Sapp
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Altmetrics
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Sociology
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Sociology
Abstract

Using a mixed method approach of secondary data analysis and in-depth interviews, this thesis investigates college-educated Asian stay-at-home mothers' (SAHMs) sociodemographic characteristics, motivations for staying home, and their authentic experiences caring for their children in the United States. It demonstrates how a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods helps to improve understanding of less common but emerging social groups and phenomena. Using 2010 ACS PUMS data, I found non-citizenship status to be a significant factor that contributed to college-educated Asian mothers' staying at home. In-depth interviews revealed that the motivations for college-educated Asian mothers to stay at home were based on a combination of mothers' social psychological and external factors. Social psychological factors included their immense love and great sense of responsibility for children and family, the high value they placed on parental care and their children's education, their preference for a free and easy lifestyle, and their strong belief in Christianity. External factors included their husband's supportive attitude, lack of help with childcare, high cost of daycare, limited opportunity for employment, and supportive social culture for SAHMs. The relative contribution of internal and external factors cannot be determined with this study and more research is needed to disentangle these factors.

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