This article reviews recent research (1999 - 2009) on the effects of parenthood on wellbeing. We use a life course framework to consider how parenting and childlessness influence well-being throughout the adult life course. We place particular emphasis on social contexts and how the impact of parenthood on well-being depends on marital status, gender, race/ethnicity, and socioeconomic status. We also consider how recent demographic shifts lead to new family arrangements that have implications for parenthood and well-being. These include stepparenting, parenting of grandchildren, and childlessness across the life course.