Summary. We use a graphical chain model to investigate the reciprocal relationships between changes in women's labour force participation following entry into parenthood and changes in gender role attitude. Results suggest that attitudes are not fixed and that revision of these attitudes in the light of recent life course events is an important process. The adaptation of attitudes to events appears to be stronger than the selection of individuals on the basis of attitudes. We show that it is not entry into parenthood as such, but the change in economic activity that is related to this event that is associated with attitude change.