PROTECTIONISM Parents of only children tend to push them toward brainy pursuits and away from risky physical activity, concludes a study conducted at Ohio State and published in the Journal of Career Assessment. That helps explain why onlies--and to a lesser extent, firstborns--often wind up on the lawyer or doctor track while later-born kids find it easier to bloom as poets or park rangers.
TAG-TEAM RETIREMENT Marriages typically undergo a bumpy transition into retirement, according to a Cornell University study, particularly when one spouse quits working before the other. Conflict was highest when husbands retired first, propelling couples into nontraditional roles. But that doesn't mean retirement increases the risk that a couple will divorce. Once the couple adjusts, the golden years tend to be a happy time for husbands and wives.
WHAT WORKS? The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy reports that a wide variety of approaches have proved successful in reducing teen pregnancies, thus allowing communities to back specific programs that fit their resources and values. Programs that involve youths in tutoring and volunteer activities and don't mention sex at all have worked. So has teaching comprehensive sex education. Contrary to the worries of many parents, sex ed does not hasten the onset of sexual activity, the study says.
--By David Bjerklie