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Los Angeles, CA--The CDC's National Center for Health Statistics has come out with a welter of new figures on newborns and their mothers.  It shows the first nationwide increase in teen childbearing in 14 years.  (Figures are for 2006.)  Out of wedlock childbearing went up again to 38.5% of all births, from 36.9% a year ago. These two phenomena are not unrelated.  There's persuasive evidence that father absence is correlated with earlier menarche, sex and pregnancy than when a father is present.  It also seems to be true of mother absence as well although there are fewer statistics on that.  So with more unmarried women having children, we shouldn't be surprised at a corresponding increase in teen pregnancy and childbearing. As I've said before, that's bad for children, bad for mothers, bad for fathers and bad for society generally. Here's an article from WebMD. Thanks to Celia for the heads-up.

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