Living apart together and cohabitation intentions in Great Britain

Publication type

Journal Article

Published in

Journal of Family Issues


Rory Coulter and Yang Hu

Publication date


A growing number of studies examine how, why, and when people form and maintain living apart together (LAT) relationships. Although this literature shows that LAT is a diverse and ambiguous practice, little is known about whether people live apart together in particular ways under distinct constellations of life course circumstances. Moreover, it is unclear how intentions to convert LAT into cohabitation are configured by life trajectories. Drawing on data from an unprecedentedly large survey of people in LAT partnerships, we construct a fourfold typology of individuals in LAT relationships and show that each of the identified profiles is characterized by a distinctive position in the life course and different cohabitation intentions. These results indicate that LAT is a flexible way to practice partnership within the context of life course circumstances.

Volume and page numbers

38, 1709-1729





Family Formation And Dissolution, Life Course Analysis, Sociology Of Households and Social Psychology



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