In their introduction and overview, the authors set the stage for the book's discussion of families with very young children. The impetus for the book was a unique survey conducted in 1995-96 by The Commonwealth Fund. A national sample of more than 2,000 mothers and fathers, the Commonwealth Survey of Parents of Young Children provided a snapshot of the condition of families with young children and the pressures and concerns faced by parents in shaping the home environments and lifestyles of those families.
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