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J Gerontol. 1988 Jan;43(1):S9-14. doi: 10.1093/geronj/43.1.s9.

Predictors of satisfaction with children's help for younger and older elderly parents.

Journal of gerontology

J L Thomas


  1. Division of Behavioral Science, University of Wisconsin-Parkside, Kenosha.

PMID: 3335759 DOI: 10.1093/geronj/43.1.s9


In structured interviews, parents aged 60 to 90 described their children's work and family responsibilities, the practical and affective support they exchanged with each of their children, their satisfaction with assistance received from their children, and their values regarding family relationships. Self-reported general health, proximity values, and kin-orientation values predicted satisfaction with children's help for the total sample. For parents aged 74 and younger, proximity values, reciprocity in help exchanges, number of children helping relatives other than the participant, and number of children working outside of the home predicted satisfaction; for parents aged 75 and older, self-reported general health and kin-orientation values predicted satisfaction. It is concluded that values regarding families, interdependence, and autonomy provide a critical context for reactions to help by adult children.

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