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Abstract

Relationships between young adults and their parents have received considerable media attention in recent years. However, research on relationships between young adult children and their parents during the transition to adulthood are scant. Using data from the Family Exchanges Study and national data sets, we document parental involvement in the lives of young adult children (aged 18–24). Parents and offspring are highly involved in one another’s lives as evident by their phone conversations (more than once a week) and frequent parental financial, practical, and emotional support. This involvement represents an increase from parental involvement 30 years ago. Students are more likely to talk with parents by phone, and nonstudents are more likely to see parents in person. Students received more support from their parents than nonstudents, and that support contributed to their life satisfaction. Parents also use student status as an indicator of the offspring’s potential future success and experience more positive relationships with grown children they view as on target for achieving adult milestones.

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... Children often need parents' support in adulthood, and many perceive receiving parental support as normative and beneficial (Arnett, 2000;Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe et al., 2012). Theory and extensive studies documented the health and well-being benefits of receiving social support, especially from significant others (Uchino, 2009). ...
... We considered both adult children's and their parents' characteristics that may be associated with children's experience with parental advice (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe et al., 2012;Fingerman et al., 2015;Greene & Grimsley, 1990;McDowell et al., 2003). Participants provided information about their age, gender (1 = female, 0 = male), years of education, marital status (1 = married or remarried, 0 = not married), and employment status (1 = working, 0 = not working). ...
... This finding was not consistent with the contingency theory, which argued that children's needs evoke a response by parents in the form of providing advice. It was probably due to the unique feature of parentto-adult child advice, in that such advice occurs more often compared to other forms of social support (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe et al., 2012). Parents may have advised their children on how to deal with problems, how to succeed in their careers, and even how to make choices in everyday life. ...
Article
Objectives: Parents often provide advice to their adult children during their everyday interactions. This study investigated young adult children’s daily experiences with parental advice in U.S. families. Specifically, the study examined how receiving advice and evaluations of parental advice were associated with children’s life problems, parent-child relationship quality, and daily mood. Method: Young adult children (aged 18–30; participant N = 152) reported whether they received any advice and perceived any unwanted advice from each parent (parent N = 235) for seven days using a daily diary design (participant-day N = 948). Adult children also reported their positive and negative mood on each interview day. Results: Results from multilevel models revealed that adult children who reported a more positive relationship with their parents were more likely to receive advice from the parent, whereas adult children who had a more strained relationship with their parents were more likely to perceive advice from the parent as unwanted. Receiving advice from mother was associated with increased positive mood, whereas unwanted advice from any parent was associated with increased negative mood. Further, the link between unwanted advice and negative mood varied by children’s life problems and parent-child relationship quality. Discussion: Indeed, parental advice is not “the more the better,” especially when the advice is unsolicited. This study highlights the importance of perceptions of family support for emerging adults’ well-being.
... Relationship satisfaction with family members promotes health by reducing the impact of stress and offering meaning and purpose (Umberson and Montez 2010). Parental relationships with young adult children, particularly children perceived as not making progress on the road to adulthood, are marked by ambivalence (Fingerman et al. 2006;Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al. 2012). This relationship strain may, in turn, tax parental health. ...
... The second pathway is that of obligation, or an increased burden of support. Parental support-both instrumental and emotionalfor young adult children has increased over time as the transition to adulthood has extended further into the life course (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al. 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Wesselmann, et al. 2012;Hartnett et al. 2013). This support includes housing, financial assistance, emotional support, and advice-giving. ...
... Given that the transition to adulthood has been extended more generally (Arnett 2014;Settersten and Ray 2010a), parents expect some degree of difficulty and uncertainty during this transition. In fact, parents are ready and willing to help as their children embark on the road to adulthood (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al. 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Wesselmann, et al. 2012;Fingerman et al. 2015). As young people move through the transition to adulthood, however, parents may expect children's difficulties and their need for assistance to diminish (Hartnett et al. 2013). ...
Article
For many African American youth, the joint influences of economic and racial marginalization render the transition to stable adult roles challenging. We have gained much insight into how these challenges affect future life chances, yet we lack an understanding of what these challenges mean in the context of linked lives. Drawing on a life course framework, this study examines how young African Americans’ experiences across a variety of salient domains during the transition to adulthood affect their mothers’ health. Results suggest that stressors experienced by African Americans during the transition to adulthood (e.g., unemployment, troubled romantic relationships, arrest) heighten their mothers’ cumulative biological risk for chronic diseases, or allostatic load, and reduce subjective health. These results suggest that the toll of an increasingly tenuous and uncertain transition to adulthood extends beyond young people to their parents. Hence, increased public investments during this transition may not only reduce inequality and improve life chances for young people themselves, but may also enhance healthy aging by relieving the heavy burden on parents to help their children navigate this transition.
... Further, parental support of emerging adults has become increasingly prevalent over historical time (Eggebeen 1992). Parental support may be especially important in successful transitions out of the family home (Hussong and Chassin 2004), including among emerging adults who leave to attend college (Fingerman et al. 2012). Many scholars include parental provision of social support as a dimension of positive parent-child connection (Furman and Buhrmester 1985), which can include forms of nurturant (emotional and/or esteem), informational (or advice), and tangible (or instrumental) support (Barrera and Ainlay 1983;Cutrona and Russell 1990). ...
... Recent research highlights the importance of parsing the emerging adult's level of desired support (and for what type) relative to the quantity and type of support provided by their parent (Wang 2019). Across these literatures, a positive, connected, supportive parent-emerging adult relationship is clearly a valuable resource that can bolster healthy emerging adult relatedness, well-being and adjustment (Barry et al. 2008;Fingerman et al. 2012; Padilla-Walker and Nelson 2019). ...
... We also hypothesized that emerging adults would perceive more support in parents text messages if they exchanged more frequent text messages and exchanged more texts reflecting positive connection. Given higher rates of mother than father communication with emerging adults (Fingerman et al. 2012), we analyzed mother-and father-emerging adult dyads separately, and hypothesized that texting frequency, positive connection, and monitoring and disclosing behaviors would all be more common in mother-than fatheremerging adult dyads. Based on prior research, we did not make specific predictions about differential associations of text message frequency and content with digital pressure and text message support between mother-and father-emerging adult dyads (Padilla-Walker and Nelson 2019). ...
Article
Full-text available
In emerging adulthood, when many young people are away from their families for the first time, mobile phones become an important conduit for maintaining relationships with parents. Yet, objective assessment of the content and frequency of text messaging between emerging adults and their parents is lacking in much of the research to date. We collected two weeks of text messages exchanged between U.S. college students (N = 238) and their parents, which yielded nearly 30,000 parent-emerging adult text messages. We coded these text message exchanges for traditional features of parent-emerging adult communication indexing positive connection, monitoring and disclosures. Emerging adults texted more with mothers than with fathers and many messages constitute parental check-ins and emerging adult sharing regarding youth behavior and well-being. Findings highlight that both the frequency and content of parent-emerging adult text messages can be linked with positive (perceived text message support) and negative (perceived digital pressure) aspects of the parent-emerging adult relationship. The content of parent-emerging adult text messages offers a valuable, objective window into the nature of the parent-emerging adult relationships in the digital age of the 21st century.
... Furthermore, less favorable relationships were associated with greater perceived stress and more depressive symptoms. Thus, with the single exception of gay and bisexual men and relationships with their mothers, our central hypothesisthat differences in the qualities of family relationships might underlie differences in participants' stress and depressive symptomswas confirmed, That more distant relationships with parents described by lesbian, gay, and bisexual participants did in fact mediate disparities in stress and depressive symptoms underlines the importance of parent-child relationships well into adulthood (Fingerman et al., 2012). To the degree that associations observed here reflect causal influences, any improvements in family relationships might be expected to benefit lesbian, gay, and bisexual family members. ...
... In addition, these results suggest the value of support for the efforts of family support groups, such as those sponsored by PFLAG. It may also be worth considering possible benefits stemming from strengthened relationships within the family to be experienced by parents as well as by their adult children (Fingerman et al., 2012). Further research with this age group examining these issues would be helpful. ...
... Mental health problems among adolescents whose parents disapprove of non-heterosexual identities have been reported by many investigators (e.g., Bouris et al., 2010;D'Augelli et al., 2008). Even in emerging adulthood, the support of parents is acknowledged to be important (Fingerman et al., 2012), and less favorable parent-child relationships have been linked with mental health problems (Needham & Austin, 2010). By their late twenties, however, individuals have generally finished school, entered the labor market, become financially self-supporting, and established independent households; in addition, many have married and had children. ...
Article
Disparities in depressive symptoms as a function of sexual orientation have been well documented, but less is known about their origins. This study examines whether, even in adulthood, less favorable parental relationships are associated with disparities in depressive symptoms as a function of sexual orientation. Cross-sectional data were drawn from Wave IV of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health. Gay, lesbian, and bisexual (GLB) participants reported lower quality parental relationships, greater stress, and more depressive symptoms than did heterosexual participants. Lower quality parental relationships were associated with higher stress. Higher stress and lower quality parental relationships were associated with more depressive symptoms. GLB individuals reported lower father relationship quality and higher stress, which partially mediated the association of sexuality and depressive symptoms. Lesbian and bisexual women reported lower mother relationship quality and higher stress, which fully mediated the association of sexuality and depressive symptoms. While no differences in mother relationship quality existed for men, mother relationship quality was more strongly associated with depressive symptoms for gay and bisexual men than for heterosexual men. Even in adulthood, greater stress and depressive symptoms among GLB individuals were at least partially accounted for by less favorable parental relationships.
... Rates of contact between young adults and their parents have increased dramatically over the past few decades. Studies in US in the 21st century find that over half of young adults (55 per cent) report contact with parents -by phone, in person, by text -daily or nearly every day and another 25 per cent report contact several times a week (Arnett & Schwab, 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe et al., 2012). Similarly, data from the Netherlands revealed that nearly three quarters (72 per cent) of young people had at least weekly phone contact with parents and nearly as many saw them in person that often (Bucx et al., 2008). ...
... Similarly, data from the Netherlands revealed that nearly three quarters (72 per cent) of young people had at least weekly phone contact with parents and nearly as many saw them in person that often (Bucx et al., 2008). In the 1980s, data from a variety of sources indicated that contact between adults and parents occurred less frequently; just over half of parents reported any type of contact with a grown child once a week or more often (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe et al., 2012). ...
... For example, the US showed a trend of increased contact between generations prior to widespread use of cellphones. Only 38 per cent of the US population reported using a cellphone in 2000, yet national data in the US reveals a trend of increasing contact between adults and their parents beginning in the early 1990s (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe et al., 2012). ...
... In a study examining parental involvement with college students in Germany, Hong Kong, the United States, and Korea, the students reported frequent contacts with parents, with both practical and emotional support being received from parents on a monthly basis . As for gender differences in the quality of relationships between adults and their parents, studies revealed that mothers gave more support to their grown children and reported stronger bonds with them than did fathers (Bucx, van Wel, & Knijn, 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al., 2012;Fingerman et al., 2011;Hogan, Eggebeen, & Clogg, 1993;Lawton, Silverstein, & Bengtson, 1994). ...
... Affective support from parents might improve the overall well-being of their adult children (Roberts & Bengtson, 1993). Grown children reported better adjustment and well-being when they were receiving emotional support from their parents (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al., 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Wesselman, et al., 2012;Fingerman et al., 2013). A study that examined the relationships between perceived social support and several components of subjective well-being (positive and negative affect, as well as satisfaction with life) among college students in Iran, Jordan, and the United States revealed that perceived support from family significantly predicted well-being in each country (Brannan, Biswas-Diener, Mohr, Mortazavi, & Stein, 2012). ...
... Significant positive associations were found in both countries between the degree of emotional closeness with both mothers and fathers, and the children's life satisfaction. These findings support previous studies showing that close personal relationships contribute to well-being (Roberts & Bengtson, 1993) and that, in particular, emotional support from parents is associated with adult children's well-being (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al., 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Wesselman, et al., 2012;Fingerman et al., 2013). This also indicates that emotional closeness is a strong and autonomous component in the parent-child relationship that adds to the child's well-being. ...
Article
This study explores the relationships of adult children with their parents, and their impact on the child's life satisfaction, in Israel and in Germany. Structural equation models tested three types of parental support (practical, emotional, and advice) and emotional closeness as predictors of the child's life satisfaction. Israeli students aged 21 to 40 years (N = 590) reported significantly more frequent social support and a higher degree of emotional closeness with their mothers than German students of the same age-group (N = 535). Differences between the Israeli and German samples were evident in the association of fathers' support and the child's emotional closeness. Significant positive associations were found between the degree of emotional closeness with mothers and fathers and the child's life satisfaction in both Israel and Germany. These findings suggest that emotional closeness continues to play an essential and universal role in the relationships between adult children and their parents.
... Middle-aged parents' feelings about helping may be associated with how offspring evaluate that help. Although parents provide considerable support to grown children, they do not always find it rewarding to do so (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al., 2012). Furthermore, parents may harbor conflicted beliefs about helping grown children. ...
... With regard to work status, 35% were full-time students, 45% worked full time, and 33% worked part time. Few grown children were married (16%) or cohabitating with a partner (11%), most were single and never married (70%); 24% of grown children had children of their own (for additional details see Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al., 2012;. ...
... On average, offspring received multiple types of support several times a month on the ISI. These reports are consistent with our prior research (Fingerman et al., 2009, Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al., 2012. The average parental ratings for feelings of reward in providing support was between "somewhat" and "quite a bit" on the 5-point scale, and the average for stress from helping was "a little" to "somewhat." ...
Poster
Parents and adult children often provide advice to one another in everyday interactions. However, few studies have examined how received advice is perceived (i.e., whether the advice was solicited or not). Unwanted advice can be a source of tensions in parent-child interactions, and may represent longstanding problems in dyadic relationships. Using data from Family Exchange Study (Wave 2), the current study examined how adult children’s perceptions of unwanted advice from parents are associated with life situations and relationship characteristics. Adult children (N = 381, aged 45–65) reported how often they perceived unwanted advice from each parent (N = 491). Multilevel models revealed that adult children were more likely to perceive unwanted advice from aging parents when they suffer major life problems (e.g., divorce, major health problem, addiction). This association was also moderated by adult children’s relationship quality with older parents. Thus, adult children suffering problems were less likely to perceive advice from parents as unwanted when they had better relationships with parents. Our findings will contribute to the literature by considering how received support is perceived in parent-child relationships, which can be critical in understanding the implications of intergenerational support for well-being.
... It is especially important to examine the impact on the quality of the relationship with the parents. In young adulthood, a positive relationship with parents is linked to important developmental outcomes, including successful transition to adulthood and life satisfaction (Fingerman et al., 2012). ...
... Young adults who abuse social media may therefore be less close to their parents since they would not meet parental expectations. Third, adolescence is characterized by a quest for independence from the parents accompanied by an increased involvement in the peer group, whereas young adulthood generally includes the reinsertion of the importance of parents (Fingerman et al., 2012;Miller-Slough & Dunsmore, 2016). It is therefore possible that young adults who present social media addiction may maintain this preference for peers due to the social networking nature of these platforms, which could then affect the relationship with parents. ...
... Hypotheses are that: (a) social media addiction is linked with poorer relationship quality with the mother and the father, (b) social media addiction is linked with higher level of internalizing problems, and (c) internalizing problems are a mediator in the association between social media addiction and the quality of the relationship with parents. Family income, gender, and parental levels of education are also considered as these could be important confounding variables (Fingerman et al., 2012;Hair et al., 2008;Sampasa-Kanyinga et al., 2020). ...
Article
Full-text available
The pervasiveness of social media in the lives of young adults raises concerns about the potential of problematic use. Social media addiction is likely to affect positive and negative aspects of the relationships quality with mothers and fathers but mechanisms explaining these associations remain unknown. Participants in this study (N = 435; Mage= 19.17; SD = 0.30) completed the Bergen Social Media Addiction Scale and reported their symptoms of anxiety, depression and the quality of the relationship with mothers and fathers (i.e. conflict, satisfaction, equality). Considering important confounding variables, results of a path analysis model show that the level of social media addiction is related to high conflict, low satisfaction and low equality with father, and high conflict and low equality with mother. Moreover, social media addiction is positively linked to symptoms of anxiety and depression. Finally, anxiety and depression mediate the links between social media addiction and conflict, satisfaction and equality with the mother, and conflict and satisfaction with the father. Our findings contribute to the understanding of the potential mechanisms underlying the associations between social media addiction and the relationship with parents in young adults. Theoretical explanations and practical implications are proposed in discussion. Future research should use a longitudinal design to support this mediating effect.
... In this analysis, we focus on two social domains-parents and peers-that figure heavily in studies of criminal "onset" but that have been relatively neglected in studies of adult desistance. Particularly within the contemporary context, parents and peers may continue to play a role as significant sources of support and influence, as more general research on the uncertain period of "emerging adulthood" has recently highlighted (Barry, Madsen, and DeGrace 2015;Fingerman et al. 2012;Young et al. 2015). ...
... Yet while many studies have examined links between problematic relationships with parents and juvenile delinquency, few studies have considered the continuing role of parents on young adults' offending trajectories (but see Johnson et al. 2011). Nevertheless, the more general literature on the adult transition period provides growing support for the idea that the parent's role is not confined to the periods of childhood and adolescence (Fingerman et al. 2012;Swartz and O'Brien 2016). This developing literature suggests that parents may continue to play an important role for young adults not only for tangibles such as housing but as a more general source of emotional support (see, e.g., Aquilino 2006;Johnson et al. 2011;Schulenberg and Zarrett 2006). ...
Article
Objectives Research on criminal continuity and change has traditionally focused on elements of the adult life course (e.g., marriage and employment); however, recent social and economic changes suggest the need to consider a broader range of factors. In addition, researchers have increasingly recognized the importance of identity changes in the desistance process. Methods Using five waves of structured data from the Toledo Adolescent Relationships Study (TARS), we examined identity changes, shifts in involvement with delinquent peers, and variability in closeness with parents as influences on desistance. In-depth interviews with a subset of TARS respondents offered a person-centered lens on individual and social processes associated with variability in criminal behavior. Results Findings indicated that identity changes were associated with declines in offending. In addition, changes in parental closeness and the extent of affiliation with antisocial peers contributed to patterns of offending, net of these subjectively experienced cognitive changes. Conclusions Cognitive processes are important to desistance. However, they do not independently provide a path to sustained behavioral change. Social experiences, including changes in relationships/supports from parents and affiliation with delinquent peers, also figure into change processes. We discuss the implications of our findings for future research and programmatic efforts.
... Chen Psychology interpersonal transgressions. Indeed, research has indicated that the majority of young adults entering college traverse this transitional stage accompanied by their parents (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, Birditt, & Zarit, 2012;Gavazzi, 2012;Schwanz, Palm, Hill-Chapman, & Broughton, 2014). ...
... In fact, several studies have proposed that the victim's dependence on the perpetrator for support, security, and protection creates the potential to feel hurt by relational devaluation (see Lemay, et al., 2012;Shaver, Mikulincer, Lavy, & Cassidy, 2009). Moreover, if the parental involvement and support may not end when students enter college and young adulthood (Fingerman, et al., 2012;Schwanz, et al., 2014), and if dependence is a central component of feeling hurt in response to relational devaluation (Lemay, et al., 2012), the offended who highly value the family relationships and are committed to them should be more likely to feel hurt in these contexts. ...
... Parents and children are highly involved in one another's lives and frequent parental financial, practical, and emotional support in young adulthood reflects the transition to adulthood. The majority of young adults live this period accompanied by their parents (Fingerman et al., 2012). Also, studies revealed that filial piety is common among young adults (Xu, 2012). ...
... The intergenerational bonds provide a framework for service providers to support families in later years (Brubaker & Brubaker, 1999). However, qualities of parent-child relationships in young adulthood stem from earlier histories and prior relationship qualities from childhood or adolescence as confirmed in our study (Fingerman et al., 2012). ...
... Chen Psychology interpersonal transgressions. Indeed, research has indicated that the majority of young adults entering college traverse this transitional stage accompanied by their parents (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, Birditt, & Zarit, 2012;Gavazzi, 2012;Schwanz, Palm, Hill-Chapman, & Broughton, 2014). ...
... In fact, several studies have proposed that the victim's dependence on the perpetrator for support, security, and protection creates the potential to feel hurt by relational devaluation (see Lemay, et al., 2012;Shaver, Mikulincer, Lavy, & Cassidy, 2009). Moreover, if the parental involvement and support may not end when students enter college and young adulthood (Fingerman, et al., 2012;Schwanz, et al., 2014), and if dependence is a central component of feeling hurt in response to relational devaluation (Lemay, et al., 2012), the offended who highly value the family relationships and are committed to them should be more likely to feel hurt in these contexts. ...
... Further, student status may shape the nature of parent-child daily interactions. Students typically are in frequent contact with parents and receive more frequent support from their parents than emerging adults not enrolled in school (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al., 2012;Swartz et al., 2011). ...
... We also considered daily support. Global surveys find that emerging adults turn to their parents for advice, emotional support, and practical help (Arnett & Schwab, 2012;Bucx, van Wel, & Knijn, 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, Birditt, & Zarit, 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Wesselmann, et al., 2012;Swartz, Kim, Uno, Mortimer, & O'Brien, 2011). Parental financial support is pivotal during the transition to adulthood (Johnson, 2013;Remle, 2011) but may not occur on a daily basis. ...
Article
Coresidence between emerging adults and parents is now common in the United States, but we know little about how coresidence influences daily experiences in these ties. Coresident (n = 62) and noncoresident (n = 97) emerging adults (aged 18–30) reported daily experiences with parents and mood for 7 days. During the study week, compared to offspring who lived apart from parents, coresident offspring were more likely to experience positive encounters, receive more support, wish parents would change, feel irritated, and report that their parents got on their nerves. Coresident offspring did not differ from noncoresident offspring with regard to stressful thoughts. Stressful thoughts about parents were associated with more negative daily mood; this effect did not differ for coresident and noncoresident offspring. Findings are discussed with regard to intergenerational ambivalence. In sum, coresident emerging adults were more involved with parents but not more affected by daily experiences with parents.
... Parents have more frequent contact with their young adult children than was the case thirty years ago. Research using national US data from the mid to late twentieth century revealed that only half of parents reported contact with a grown child at least once a week (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, Birditt, & Zarit, 2012). Because most parents have more than one grown child, by inference many grown children had even less frequent contact with their parents. ...
Article
Full-text available
The period of young adulthood has transformed dramatically over the past few decades. Today, scholars refer to “emerging adulthood” and “transitions to adulthood” to describe adults in their 20s. Prolonged youth has brought concomitant prolonged parenthood. This article addresses 3 areas of change in parent/child ties, increased (a) contact between generations, (b) support from parents to grown children as well as coresidence and (c) affection between the generations. We apply the Multidimensional Intergenerational Support Model (MISM) to explain these changes, considering societal (e.g., economic, technological), cultural, family demographic (e.g., fertility, stepparenting), relationship, and psychological (normative beliefs, affection) factors. Several theoretical perspectives (e.g., life course theory, family systems theory) suggest that these changes may have implications for the midlife parents’ well-being. For example, parents may incur deleterious effects from (a) grown children’s problems or (b) their own normative beliefs that offspring should be independent. Parents may benefit via opportunities for generativity with young adult offspring. Furthermore, current patterns may affect future parental aging. As parents incur declines of late life, they may be able to turn to caregivers with whom they have intimate bonds. Alternately, parents may be less able to obtain such care due to demographic changes involving grown children raising their own children later or who have never fully launched. It is important to consider shifts in the nature of young adulthood to prepare for midlife parents’ future aging.
... Parental investment does not end with compulsory schooling. Research on the transition to adulthood has described substantial dependence of young adults on their families, as well as the more limited ability of socioeconomically disadvantaged families to support their children (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, Birditt, & Zarit, 2012;Settersten & Ray, 2010;Swartz, 2008). ...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Families transmit advantages to children in part by the resources they invest. While it is expected that young children will depend on family resources, the prolonged transition to adulthood has extended parental support into the 20s (and beyond). One of the important contributors to this prolonged transition to adulthood is prolonged schooling, and in particular the pursuit of higher education. In this study, I examine the exchange of support among low-income young adults pursuing higher education and their families, including the support students receive as well as provide to their families. The results regarding different types of support (financial, emotional, and in-kind) and the direction of support (from families to young adults or the reverse) reveal unique patterns related to both the amount of resources families have and the presence of siblings. Moreover, only one type of support – emotional support received by students from their families – is related to academic outcomes. These results offer valuable insights into the exchange of support in socioeconomically disadvantaged families, with implications for both research and policy.
... In the twenty-first century, research has documented the supportive roles that parents play in their children's lives during young adulthood (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe et al., 2012;Johnson, 2013). In fact, young people's prolonged dependence on parents into the early 30 s is a defining feature of this stage of life (Cooney & Uhlenberg, 1992;Furstenberg, Rumbaut, & Settersten, 2005;Schoeni & Ross, 2005). ...
Article
Parents are an important source of affection and support for young adults in the U.S., so those who lack parental relationships are a potentially vulnerable group. This study outlines how common it is for young adults to report lacking an active parental tie and provides a portrait of these young adults. Analysis of the 2008–2009 National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (N = 5090) reveals that the vast majority of young adults ages 25–32 in the U.S. – 97.6% – have an active relationship with at least one parent figure. Only a small share of young adults lack a relationship with a mother figure (6%), due primarily to early maternal death. A larger share of young adults lack a relationship with a father figure (20%), usually because their father figure is deceased or they never had a father figure (rather than having become estranged over time). Young adults who are Black or from lower socioeconomic backgrounds are more likely to lack parental ties in young adulthood. In addition, prior events such as parental separation or incarceration are associated with an elevated likelihood of being estranged in early adulthood (though these events are rarely followed by estrangement with an existing parent figure).
... The limited empirical research on parental help and later young adult outcomes reveals mixed results. Previous research finds that parental aid boosts students' subjective perceptions of their status attainment, enhances students' life satisfaction (Fingerman et al. 2012b;Johnson 2013;Johnson and Benson 2012) and is associated with higher living standards for adult offspring in Israel (Semyonov and Lewin-Epstein 2001). Hamilton (2013) found both positive and negative effects of parental help on educational outcomes: parent financial aid for college expenses decreased offspring's cumulative GPA but increased their likelihood of graduating from college within 5 years. ...
Article
Full-text available
Responding to the longer and more variable transition to adulthood, parents are stepping in to help their young adult children. Little is known, however, about the extent to which parental support promotes success, and whether parental support has different effects for young adult sons and daughters. Using longitudinal data from the Youth Development Study, we find that parental “scaffolding” assistance for educational expenses predicts college graduation for both men and women. Negative life events experienced during the transition to adulthood are associated with lower earnings by the early 30s, although there is some variation by type of event. More frequent parental support during times of need does not predict long-term economic attainment for sons or daughters.
... Research also shows that beyond the emotional aspects of the tie, children's problems are particularly detrimental for parents' well-being. Parents are sensitive to having a child who is suffering a problem, even when other children in the family are thriving or successful [1] . Other studies have found that parental well-being declines over time when grown children suffer distress, perhaps due to parental empathy [33] . ...
... Significant positive associations were found in both countries between the degree of emotional closeness with both mothers and fathers, and the children's life satisfaction. These findings support previous studies showing that close personal relationships contribute to well-being (Roberts & Bengtson, 1993) and that, in particular, emotional support from parents is associated with adult children's well-being (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al., 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Wesselman, et al., 2012;Fingerman et al., 2013). This also indicates that emotional closeness is a strong and autonomous component in the parent-child relationship that adds to the child's well-being. ...
Article
This study explores the relationships of adult children with their parents, and their impact on the child’s life satisfaction, in Israel and in Germany. Structural equation models tested three types of parental support (practical, emotional, and advice) and emotional closeness as predictors of the child’s life satisfaction. Israeli students aged 21 to 40 years (N = 590) reported significantly more frequent social support and a higher degree of emotional closeness with their mothers than German students of the same age-group (N = 535). Differences between the Israeli and German samples were evident in the association of fathers’ support and the child’s emotional closeness. Significant positive associations were found between the degree of emotional closeness with mothers and fathers and the child’s life satisfaction in both Israel and Germany. These findings suggest that emotional closeness continues to play an essential and universal role in the relationships between adult children and their parents.
... Specifically, husbands' more frequent support provided to their adult child was associated with less sleep, which validates the findings that support may be an indicator of caregiving (suggesting burden) rather than an indicator of a parent/child connection for fathers. When husbands provide more frequent support to adult children, it is often more need based than mothers, that is, it is in relation to life problems experienced by the adult child (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, Birditt, & Zarit, 2012). Thus, support may be more taxing for fathers making it more difficult for husbands to get a sufficient amount of sleep as a result of the time and energy demands related to giving such support. ...
Article
Purpose of the study: Sleep is a key factor in maintaining positive health and well-being throughout life. Although the negative outcomes of sleep problems are becoming better understood, less is known about how intergenerational relationships might affect sleep. Thus, this investigation examines the dyadic associations of support for, stress over, and worrying about adult children on sleep quality for husbands and wives. Design and Methods: The sample included 186 heterosexual married couples drawn from the Family Exchanges Study. To account for nonindependence in the dyadic data and explore questions of mutual influence, we used actor–partner interdependence models. Results: Husbands’ and wives’ reports of supporting their adult child and husbands’ worry were associated with husbands’ sleep quality. Conversely, wives’ stress about supporting their adult child was associated with wives’ sleep quality. Findings suggest that relationships with adult children have different associations for sleep quality among middle-aged husbands and wives. Implications: Our findings have implications for health-related research with couples and families and for providers who work with individuals struggling with sleep problems. Assisting aging parents to be aware of and manage ways that stress, support, and concern for adult children relate to their sleep may benefit them in multifaceted ways.
... Finally, the sample used in the current study consisted primarily of residential college students, which limits the generalizability of the findings. For instance, previous researchers have suggested that parents may parent their emerging-adult children differently based upon whether they are residential college students (Fingerman et al. 2012). Additionally, residential college students typically have greater opportunities for identity exploration and feel less pressure to settle into adult roles, which is associated with lower levels of identity commitment (Benson and Elder 2011). ...
Article
Full-text available
This study examined the moderating roles of parental warmth, gender, and ethnicity on the association between each parent’s psychological control and emerging adults’ identity development among a sample of college students. A total of 678 Asian-American or European-American undergraduates completed self-reported questionnaires assessing variables of interest. Psychological control by mothers and fathers was associated negatively with identity commitment. Hierarchical regression analyses indicated that maternal psychological control was related negatively to identity commitment when parental warmth levels were higher, but not when warmth levels were lower. Additionally, paternal psychological control negatively predicted identity commitment when warmth levels were higher for emerging-adult women only. The findings provide theoretical and practical implications for the field by placing emphasis upon the role of parental warmth and emerging adults’ gender on the relation between parental psychological control and emerging adults’ identity development.
... It may be that grandchildren do not need much support from grandparents because they have other potential sources of support. Parents often provide help (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, Birditt, & Zarit, 2012) and friends or romantic partners also may offer a hand (Beyers & Seiffge-Krenke, 2007;Seiffge-Krenke, 2003). ...
... As many college students often communicate with their parents, particularly mothers (Kenny and Sirin 2006;Schon 2014), female emerging adults in the current study likewise maintained frequent and intimate communication with their mothers, but their close relationship with mothers might have backfired when mothers exerted high control (particilarly psychological control) on their emerging adult daughters and become more of helicopter parents. By contrast, as the amount of time daughters spend with fathers declines during adolescent years (Larson et al. 1996) and beyond (Fingerman et al. 2012), so does the daughter-father relationship quality (Dunleavy et al. 2011). The feeling of closeness to fathers is also often dependent on shared activities rather than shared intimacies (Way and Gillman 2000). ...
Article
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Objectives The overall goal of this study was to develop a stronger understanding of the role of culture in shaping the experience of parental control and its mental health implications for emerging adults. Specifically, the study focused parental psychological and behavioral control, and their potential implications for emerging adults’ hopelessness and depressive symptoms. A core hypothesis is that associations of parental control with mental health would differ between Latinas and non-Latinas because of cultural differences in parental expectations and parent-child dynamics. Additionally, similarities and differences in the role of mothers’ and fathers’ control were explored. Methods The sample consisted of 330 female emerging adults, including 146 Latinas and 184 non-Latinas. Participants completed questionnaires assessing their perceptions of parental psychological and behavioral control, of mothers and fathers separately, and mental health indicators. Results Results from path models demonstrated the relevance of mothers’ psychological control for both Latinas and non-Latinas, while differential implications of mothers’ behavioral control were found for Latinas and non-Latinas. In addition, mothers’ psychological control appeared to be more salient than fathers’ psychological control for female emerging adults’ mental health. Conclusions The role of culture in the function of parental control for emerging adults’ mental health is discussed.
... Comparative cohort data from the United States and Finland suggested that parental support of their young adult children has increased markedly over the past three decades, regardless of parental socioeconomic status (Fingerman et al., 2015;Majamaa, 2011). Among various types of parental support, the most commonly reported was nontangible support, such as advice, companionship, and emotional support, followed by financial and practical support (Bucx, van Wel, & Knijn, 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, Birditt, & Zarit, 2012). Although parents may become less directly involved in scaffolding, these multidimensional supports facilitate young adults' ongoing process of experimentation and exploration--the remarkable developmental tasks in early adulthood (Aquilino, 2006). ...
Chapter
There is an increasing trend of overparenting across different cultures and there is a growing interest in its influence on the prevalence of university students’ mental health problems. Overparenting can undermine the development of autonomy and independence among young adult children. In this chapter, focusing on parental influence on university students’ mental health, we first described the background and current state of overparenting. Following that, we reviewed the research literature on the association between overparenting and university students’ mental health. We summarized and compared three empirical studies that were conducted on overparenting and university students’ mental health in U.S. (N = 441), Finland (N = 306), and China (N = 545). Study 1 of American university students revealed that helicopter parenting was associated with university students’ anxiety, depressive symptoms, emotional dysregulation, and life dissatisfaction. Study 2 of Finnish university students found similar results. Study 3 of Chinese university students suggested that parental overprotection was associated with anxiety and depressive symptoms. We discussed the implications of the research for parents, family practitioners, educators, and administrators in higher education.
... Research also shows that beyond the emotional aspects of the tie, children's problems are particularly detrimental for parents' well-being. Parents are sensitive to having a child who is suffering a problem, even when other children in the family are thriving or successful [1] . Other studies have found that parental well-being declines over time when grown children suffer distress, perhaps due to parental empathy [33] . ...
... Comparative cohort data from the United States and Finland suggested that parental support of their young adult children has increased markedly over the past three decades, regardless of parental socioeconomic status ( Fingerman et al., 2015;Majamaa, 2011). Among various types of parental support, the most commonly reported was nontangible support, such as advice, companionship, and emotional support, followed by financial and practical support (Bucx, van Wel, & Knijn, 2012;Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, Birditt, & Zarit, 2012). Although parents may become less directly involved in scaffolding, these multidimensional supports facilitate young adults' ongoing process of experimentation and exploration -the remarkable developmental tasks in early adulthood (Aquilino, 2006). ...
Book
The book “Global Perspectives on University Students” was an initiative of the publishing program of Nova Science Publishers, Inc. Nova Science Publishers were looking for an international perspective on University Students and, accordingly, invited researchers from around the world to contribute their perspectives and empirical research. Fortunately, investigators from Argentina, Colombia, Croatia, France, Japan, New Zealand, Portugal, Spain, and the United States found the book theme interesting and decided to contribute their research. From those contributions comes the present book. The book presents chapters that cover some of the many topics relevant to University students. Specifically, chapters related to mental health, depressive symptoms and personal autonomy are complemented by other chapters focusing on the influence of family or culture on students’ behavior. Issues related to healthy lifestyle are also considered, like physical activity level and chemical dependences. More broadly, the book includes a chapter that focuses on the entrepreneurial intention of college students, considering college educations as a main influencer to economic development. Finally, the book also includes a chapter that investigates the variables that influence the process of writing a thesis, something the editors of the current book can all identify with.
... In sum, we anticipate that both structural and emotional aspects of adult grandchildren's relationships with their middle-generation parents will be influential for adult grandchildren's grief symptoms following a shared loss experience of an eldest generation (grand)parent. Moreover, we expect that structural aspects of the relationship -such as coresidence of adult grandchildren with middle-generation parents, and middle-generation parent's gender -will moderate associations between emotional aspects of this relationship (positive relationship quality, worry about parent) and adult grandchildren's grief symptoms (e.g., Fingerman et al., 2012;Stokes, 2016b;White & Rogers, 1997). Specifically, we expect the associations of (a) positive relationship quality with a middle-generation parent and (b) worry about a middle-generation parent with adult grandchildren's grief symptoms to be strongest when adult grandchildren coreside with their bereaved middle-generation parent, and when that middle-generation parent is a mother. ...
Article
Objective: This study examined adult grandchildren's experience of losing a grandparent in the context of a multigenerational family. Background: Although the death of a grandparent in adulthood is often an expected life event, this loss may still result in grief for adult grandchildren. Furthermore, bereavement is not merely an individual experience, but a family one. Characteristics of the relationship between bereaved adult grandchildren and their bereaved middle‐generation parents may influence adult grandchildren's grief responses. This includes both structural (e.g., gender of parent; coresidence with parent) and emotional (e.g., relationship quality; worry about parent) aspects of this tie. Method: Young adult grandchildren from Wave 2 of the Family Exchanges Study (2013, N = 204) reported on their recent grandparent loss experiences (N = 216) and relationships with their middle‐generation parents (N = 142). Results: Three‐level multilevel models revealed that (a) grandsons who lost a grandmother reported significantly fewer grief symptoms than all other gender combinations; (b) worry about a middle‐generation parent was associated with higher grief symptoms, but; (c) this effect was significantly stronger when the middle‐generation parent was a mother, and when adult grandchildren were coresident with that bereaved parent. Finally, relationship quality with the middle‐generation parent was not associated with grief symptoms, irrespective of context. Conclusion: Results highlight the intersection of emotional and structural aspects of multigenerational relationships following the death of a family member.
... 한편, 가족과의 관계는 개인의 웰빙에 있어 전생애에 걸쳐 중대한 역할을 하며, 가족관계의 질은 개 인의 웰빙에 상당한 영향을 미친다는 사실을 보여주는 증거가 이미 다수 존재한다 [72] . 부모로부터의 재 정적, 정서적 지원은 성인 자녀의 삶의 만족도에 긍정적인 기여를 하는 것으로 나타나며 [21] , 부모와 성 인자녀의 결속(bond)에 대해 종단 분석한 네덜란드 학자들은 부모가 자녀의 심리적 웰빙에 지속적으로 중요한 역할을 한다는 것을 밝혔다 [74] . 그러나 자녀에게 지나치게 관여하여 이른바 헬리콥터 양육방식 을 취하는 부모들의 경우, 그들의 성인자녀의 삶에 대한 불만족, 우울이나 불안, 정서조절불능 수준에 기여했다 [13] . ...
Article
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The purpose of the study is to investigate the relationship between the developmental task achievement and subjective well-being of young adults in their emerging and early adulthood. The dataset used in the study was collected in 2018, targeting single-person households living in Seoul and Gyeonggi Province, South Korea. As for the developmental tasks of young adults, stress from the romantic partner relationship, educational attainment, whether currently employed, whether having debt, and family closeness were included. Control variables cover general efficacy and social self-efficacy, gender, age, physical and mental health condition as well as leisure satisfaction. The subjective well-being of young adults was measured with Flourishing Scale developed by Keyes. Results of the study showed that educational attainment, having debt, family closeness, and employ status (currently employed) were significantly related to the subjective well-being of young adult single-person households, while employment status showed a positive effect. Among control variables, general and social self-efficacy were significant, and male respondents showed a higher level of subjective well-being compared to female respondents. Physical and mental health condition were significant as was satisfaction with leisure time. The authors conclude with a discussion of the findings and implications of the study.
... In terms of parental employment, Lim (2012), for example, found that parental absence at home (due to long working hours) affected parents' emotional closeness with their children. Regarding young people's education level, Fingerman et al. (2012c) found that college students received more support from their parents than non-students, and Brooks (2015) found that attending college can contribute to improved closeness with parents and siblings. Higher parental education level has been found to be associated with supportive parenting and bonding in the parent-child relationship (Melby et al., 2008;Neves et al., 2019). ...
Article
Full-text available
The transition to adulthood is typically marked by changes in relationships with family members, peers, and romantic partners. Despite this, the family often maintains a prominent role in young adults’ lives. A scoping review was conducted to identify the factors that influence families’ ability or capacity to provide young people with emotional support during the transition to adulthood, and to understand the gaps in this research area. Title and abstract searches were conducted from January 2007 to February 2021 in multiple databases, including PsycINFO, MEDLINE, and Sociological Abstracts. Fifteen semi-structured interviews were also conducted with stakeholders (professionals from relevant sectors/working within this field). In total, 277 articles were eligible for inclusion in the review. Following data extraction, 19 factors were identified. Factors with the most research (more than 20 articles) included: family proximity or co-residence; mental health; sex or gender differences; and family communication. Factors with less research included: societal context; young person’s sexual orientation or gender identity; social networks; and adverse life events. Gaps in the research area were also identified, including methodological issues (e.g., lack of mixed methods and longitudinal study designs), a disproportionate focus on the parent–child relationship, and a lack of contextually situated research. Our findings indicate that future research in this area could benefit from taking an intersectional, multi-method approach, with a focus on the whole family and diverse samples.
... Research has shown that maintaining close and supportive relationship with mothers is important for young adults and contributes to their adjustment (Ryan and Lynch, 1989;Aquilino, 2006;Kenny and Sirin, 2006;Buhl, 2007;Fingerman et al., 2012;Guarnieri et al., 2015). Research has also shown that many emerging adults can benefit from close relationships with their mothers also when they do not live with them (Kins et al., 2009(Kins et al., , 2014Mattanah et al., 2011). ...
Article
Full-text available
Based on past theorizing and research, we posited that there are two kinds of specific experiences that contribute to the satisfaction of the general need for autonomy in emerging adults, as reflected in volitional, self-endorsed, actions. These experiences are: (1) feeling free, and (2) having a valid authentic inner compass (AIC). In the first study testing this hypothesis, college students in Israel ( n = 163, mean age = 21.33), and in China ( n = 72, mean age = 23.67) completed measures assessing experiences of freedom and having a valid AIC during contacts with mothers, extent of volitional contacts with mothers, and vitality during contacts with mothers. Confirmatory factor analyses and invariance analysis supported the validity of the measures, and their equivalence across cultures. In the Israeli sample, students also completed a measure assessing the extent to which the sense of having a valid AIC during contacts with one’s mother is based on intrinsic aspirations and goals. As expected, across cultures, participants distinguished between experiences of (a) having a valid AIC, and (b) feeling free. The findings also suggest that experiences of freedom and of having a valid AIC during contacts with mothers are associated with extent of volitional contacts with mother, and subsequent vitality during these contacts. Also as expected, experiencing a valid AIC during contacts with mother was associated with volitional contacts with her and subsequent vitality - only when the AIC was based on intrinsic aspirations. The results suggest that in assessing people’s sense of AIC, it is important to consider the content of the aspirations and goals on which this sense is based. The findings are consistent with the view that feeling free, and having a valid AIC are two specific autonomy experiences which promote a more global experience of need autonomy satisfaction, as indicated by feelings of volitional and self-endorsed action.
... For example, in Turkish culture, mothers provide nurturing (such as providing nourishment, maintaining order in the house, etc.) and fathers provide economic support. Young individuals are often dependent on their parents, since they are financially insecure and in need of support in the decision-making process (Fingerman et al. 2012). In a study conducted in Turkish emerging adults, it was found that emerging adults still receive family support and cannot make their own decisions (Atak 2011). ...
Article
Full-text available
As a developmental turning point, emerging adulthood has been a recent focus for researchers investigating both resilience and psychopathology. The aim of this study was to examine the roles of negative experiences and the nature of the relationship with parents and siblings in the resilience of college students as emerging adults. The study group included Turkish college students as emerging adults (199 females and 101 males) who lived apart from their parents, had at least one sibling and had experienced at least one negative event. Data were collected from Child and Youth Resilience, Adverse Life Events Form, Parent-Adolescent Relationship Scale, and Lifespan Sibling Relationship Scale. Hierarchical regression analysis was performed to determine the extent to which the independent variables explained the resilience variance. The results revealed that negative life experiences were significant factors in explaining resilience. Moreover, neither a positive nor a negative relationship with the mother had an effect on explaining the resilience, while a positive relationship with the father was an important factor in explaining resilience. Meantime, the role of protective factors in terms of family relationships and the quality of sibling relationships sustained in this period were significant relational strengths for resilience. All these results are considered to be significant contributions to the culturally meaningful family functionality and the resilience of college students as emerging adults.
... First, they may offer support for altruistic reasons and care for the success and well-being of their child (Fingerman et al. 2009;). Alternatively, parents may help their children to secure support for themselves later in life (Fingerman, Cheng, Tighe, et al. 2012;Fingerman et al. 2009;Swartz 2009) or because parents are invested in their children's success because it represents their own success as parents Fingerman et al. 2009). Regardless of the reason, parents continue to provide support for their children as they age, often even after young adult children leave college (Fingerman et al. 2020;Hartnett et al. 2013;Swartz 2009;Swartz et al. 2011). ...
Article
Funding children’s college expenses can be a family project, often requiring substantial savings from parents and educational debt from children, but parents also borrow to support their children’s postsecondary ambitions. Despite growing use of debt to finance children’s college expenses, studies have overlooked parent borrowing’s role in intergenerational financial support. This study investigates parent borrowing through the federally-funded Parent Loans for Undergraduate Student (PLUS) program to illustrate the risks and hope current higher education policies demand of families across the income distribution who are working to provide a middle-class life for their children. To do so, this research uses three datasets from the National Center for Education Statistics, including the National Postsecondary Student Aid Study (NPSAS), a nationally-representative, cross-sectional survey of American undergraduates in 2015-16, the Beginning Postsecondary Student Longitudinal Study (BPS), a nationally-representative, longitudinal study of American undergraduates followed between 2003 and 2009; and finally, the Educational Longitudinal Study of 2002 (ELS:2002), a nationally-representative, longitudinal study of 10th-graders surveyed between 2002 and 2012. First, this study investigates the risks parents take when they borrow through PLUS by identifying parents’ debt burdens across the income distribution. Second, I consider whether parent borrowing delivers on parents’ hopes by examining whether PLUS eases children’s path into adulthood by increasing Bachelor’s degree attainment and financial wellbeing for families across the income distribution. My project finds that parents’, regardless of their means, are burdened by PLUS loans, albeit in different ways. In addition, PLUS loan debt is highest among high- and upper-middle income parents, demonstrating that college costs are beyond the means of even advantaged families. In addition, rather than supporting young adult children as they transition to adulthood, PLUS is not guaranteed to deliver on parents’ hopes. Instead, PLUS provides limited benefits in terms of degree attainment, and higher levels of PLUS loans are associated with greater financial stress for young adult children. I discuss the theoretical and policy implications for intergenerational family support, debt, and college affordability.
... Furthermore, the sample used in the current study consisted only of university students, which limits the generalizability of the findings. For instance, parents have been found to parent their children differently depending upon whether they were residential college students (Fingerman et al. 2012). Additionally, because emerging adults who do not live in close physical proximity to their parents may engage in greater risk behaviors than those living at home, it remains important for future researchers to control for whether emerging adults lived at home with their parents or away at a university (Cooney and Nonnamaker 1992;Simpson and Burnett 2017). ...
Article
Full-text available
Many parents continue to parent their emerging-adult children, but what becomes developmentally appropriate for such children differs from that of earlier ages. In addition, culture and context shape parenting and in turn child outcomes. Among an adolescent sample, higher-SES youth engage in higher levels of risk behaviors to manage the pressures they face from trying to live up to their parents’ high expectations for achievement compared to low- and middle-SES youth. Researchers have not yet examined the role of SES on emerging adults’ likelihood of engaging in risk behaviors in response to controlling parenting. Therefore, the current study explored the role of SES on the associations among emerging adults’ perceptions of their parents’ parenting behaviors (i.e., behavioral control, psychological control, and helicopter parenting) and change in their own risk behaviors. Undergraduate students (N = 551; Mage = 19.87, SD = 2.00; 60.6% women; 61% European American; 28.6% higher-SES) from four universities throughout the U.S. completed both waves of the study. Participants completed scales on each of their parents’ behavioral control, psychological control, and helicopter parenting, as well as a self-report measure of their own engagement in risk behaviors. Results indicated that maternal and paternal psychological control were associated positively with change in risk behaviors. Additionally, maternal and paternal behavioral control were associated with greater change in risk behaviors for higher-SES, but not lower-SES emerging adults. The findings provide new insights into the role of SES on the differential influence of parental behavioral control, psychological control, and helicopter parenting on change in emerging adults’ risk behaviors.
... Opportunities for contact increased significantly since then with the advent of cell phones, email, and web cameras. Because geographical proximity has become less necessary for sustaining emotionally close relationships ( Fingerman et al., 2012), revisiting the topic of contact and relationship quality is needed to gain a more up-to-date understanding of the issue. Since face-toface meetings are still more bound by propinquity, treating contact via phone or email and face-to-face meetings separately would be more informative in capturing the nuanced differences between the two modes of contact. ...
Article
Contact and relationship quality between adult children and aging parents are two widely used indicators of intergenerational solidarity and are often assumed to be positively correlated. However, the association between the two may depend on characteristics of the parent involved. Using Family Exchanges Study Wave 1, this study assessed whether parental difficulties—measured as functional limitations and life problems—and gender moderated the associations between middle-aged adults’ contact and relationship quality with their parents. We found that more frequent email or phone contact was associated with worse relationship quality for fathers who had functional limitations. For life problems, however, more contact was not related to relationship quality for fathers with life problems. The associations did not differ by mother’s difficulties. These results suggest that frequent contact between middle-aged adult children and aging parents does not uniformly reflect better relationship quality but rather depends on parents’ characteristics.
... Moreover, 'totally dependent' youths presented a high level of life satisfaction that may be explained by parental sustenancenot only tangible (practical and financial) but also emotional and psychological, for their life choices and studies. This is in line with previous research that showed that students receive more support from their parents than nonstudents, and that support contributes to their life satisfaction (Fingerman et al. 2012). On the other hand, it is possible that the life satisfaction of this group is influenced by the quality of parental relationship in terms of attachment (Guarnieri, Smorti, and Tani 2015;Ponti and Smorti 2018). ...
Article
Full-text available
The transition toward adulthood in Italy lasts longer than in other countries with respect to living with the family of origin, starting work, and gaining economic independence. This study aimed to analyse the transition to adulthood in Italian youths by exploring these developmental tasks. The first aim was to analyse gender and age differences in these developmental tasks. Given that these tasks are not necessarily achieved at the same time, the second aim was to establish if it might be possible to identify different clusters of individuals according to their residential, economic and employment conditions. The third aim was to explore life satisfaction in different clusters. 191 Italian emerging adults (65 males) aged 20–30 years (M = 24.40) completed the Satisfaction with Life Scale and a specific questionnaire assessing residential independence, economic autonomy, and job stability. Results showed no gender differences in the three developmental tasks. However, older participants reported a higher level of independence. Cluster analysis identified three different groups: ‘totally dependent’, ‘partially independent’ and ‘totally independent’ from parental family, differently composed in terms of partnering. These groups do not differ in life satisfaction levels. Results are discussed focusing on different independence-from-parents conditions that characterize Italian emerging adults.
... For example, it has been demonstrated that rewarding and supportive ties with parents are linked to better wellness, whereas strain or tension in parent-offspring relationships is associated with poor wellness in their adulthood (Fingerman et al., 2008). In a recent study in university students (Fingerman et al., 2012), researchers observed that parents and offspring are more involved in one another's lives nowadays than in the past. This involvement, measured in the weekly frequency of phone conversations and in the frequency of parental financial, practical, and emotional support, was characterized as a contributor in students' life satisfaction. ...
Article
Full-text available
Context: Family offers an important source of social support where individuals acquire social abilities that are necessary to create positive human relationships. This influence has been discussed by different sociological and psychological theories along the life span of individuals. In medicine, empathy, teamwork, and lifelong learning have been described as specific elements of professionalism that have special importance in the interaction with patients and in physicians' well-being at the workplace. This study was performed with the aim of demonstrating the following hypothesis: In the absence of specific training in empathy and teamwork and lifelong learning abilities, their development in medical students is associated with the students' perception of loneliness from their family environment. Methods: A cross-sectional study was performed in the only two medical schools of Cusco (Peru), one private and the other public. Jefferson Scales of Empathy, Teamwork, and Lifelong Learning were used as the main measures. Mother-son and father-son relationships and family loneliness were measured to characterize the family environment. In addition, information related to sex, medical school, academic achievements, and place of origin were collected to control possible biases. Comparative, correlation, and multiple regression analyses were performed among the variables studied. Results: In a sample of 818 medical students, differences by school appeared in empathy, teamwork, lifelong learning, and family loneliness. In addition, family loneliness showed an inverse correlation with empathy, teamwork, and learning measures. While having a positive relationship with the mother was associated with a greater development of empathy and learning abilities in the entire sample, a similar effect was observed in father-son relationships, but only in the private medical school group. Finally, in the public medical group, a multiple regression model explained 43% of the variability of empathy based on a lineal relationship with teamwork (p < 0.001), lifelong learning (p < 0.001), and family loneliness (p < 0.001). Conclusion: These findings confirm how family loneliness is detrimental to the development of medical professionalism. Also, they support the important role that the family, and especially parents, plays in the development of empathy, teamwork, and abilities in medical students. Finally, these findings highlighted important differences among students enrolled in public and private medical schools.
... Substance use and social relationships are closely intertwined across the lifespanparticularly relationships with parents. Positive parent-child relationships have long been studied as a central component in the development of prosocial attitudes and behavior among children (Glueck and Glueck 1950;Hirschi 1969;Hoeve et al. 2009) and have been shown to be consequential for well-being throughout adulthood (Fingerman et al. 2012;Wang et al. 2019). Research indicates that youth who receive more social support from parents are less likely to binge drink; use illicit drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, inhalants, and stimulants; or develop problems at school, work, or in their interpersonal relationships because of their substance abuse (Barnes and Farrell 1992;Brook et al. 1983;Johnson et al. 2011;Small et al. 2011;Stice et al. 1993;Wills and Vaughn 1989;Wright and Cullen 2001). ...
Article
Full-text available
Instrumental support from parents can be a protective factor in the lives of children and adolescents—one that serves to reduce the risks of drug and alcohol use. But the link between instrumental support from parents and substance use has seldom been explored in emerging adulthood. In particular, it is unclear whether instrumental support from parents during this stage in the life course is protective, or whether it enables young adults’ binge drinking and drug use. Four waves of panel data from the Pathways to Desistance Study are used. Multilevel models are estimated to examine the relationship between parental instrumental support (providing living expenses, loaning money, providing transportation, and shopping/cleaning/doing laundry) and two forms of substance use (binge drinking and illicit drug use) during the transition to adulthood (N = 1137 individuals; 3288 person-waves). Our findings indicate that instrumental support from parents is unrelated to changes in binge drinking or illicit drug use during emerging adulthood. This association was null regardless of the type of instrumental support provided, or how instrumental support was measured. Instrumental support also had no impact on substance use for individuals with prior histories of drug and alcohol use. The results raise questions about the salience of instrumental support from parents during emerging adulthood and instead suggest that parental support may matter most during earlier stages of the life course.
Article
Traditional theories of grief suggest that individuals experience short-term increases in depressive symptoms following the death of a parent. However, growing evidence indicates that effects of parental bereavement may persist. Situating the short- and long-term effects of parental death within the life course perspective, we assess the combined influence of time since loss and life course stage at bereavement on mental health for maternal and paternal death. Using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (N = 11,877) to examine biological parental death from childhood to mid-adulthood, we find that those who experience recent maternal or paternal death have heightened depressive symptoms. Furthermore, those who experience maternal death in childhood or paternal death in young adulthood exhibit long-term consequences for mental health. Our findings underscore the theoretical importance of early life course stages and parent’s gender when determining whether depressive symptoms persist following parental bereavement.
Chapter
The chapters in this volume are a result of the 2011 International Research Symposium on Military Families, a joint effort of the Military Family Research Institute (MFRI) at Purdue University and the Center for Deployment Psychology (CDP) at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. The symposium was organized into four half-day sessions, respectively focusing on marital and family functioning, parenting and child outcomes, single service members, and family sequelae of wounds and injuries. Each session comprised a series of scholarly presentations and an extended period of structured discussion during which working groups considered research and training priorities for the future. Following the discussions, symposium participants were asked to endorse what they saw as the highest priorities for future research and training. In this chapter, we review the key points presented during each session and present the results of each structured discussion.
Article
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This article tests competing mechanisms explaining linkages between parent–child educational similarity and parental advice and interest to adult children, asking whether mechanisms differ for mothers and fathers. Educational similarities might provide common ground whereas educational dissimilarity affects parents' authority to dispense advice. Using ordered logistic regression with data from the Netherlands Kinship Panel Study (N = 2,444) parental advice and interest are modeled separately for mothers and fathers. Seemingly unrelated estimation is used to test for gender differences across models, revealing that mechanisms driving parental support differ by parents' gender. Fathers show more interest in adult children when they are educationally similar (consistent with the homophily hypothesis), but only among the highly educated, whereas mothers show more interest to highly educated children, regardless of their own level of educational attainment. Fathers' advice is conditioned on their own educational attainment whereas mothers give advice unconditionally (consistent with the gender hypothesis).
Article
Objective This study examined whether youth and parent perceptions of parent–child contact, closeness, and conflict change during the transition to adulthood, and how perceived parent–child relations vary as a function of life course experiences such as residential, education, and relationship status. Background The parent–child relationship is one of the most influential and long‐lasting social ties. Much research on this relationship focuses on childhood, adolescence, and late life, with data from one generation only. Guided by a life course perspective, this study sought to investigate youth and parent perceptions of parent–child relations during the transition to adulthood—a relatively understudied area. Method Data were from a community sample of German parent–child dyads (N = 2,301, 50% daughter, 65% mother) who participated in the German Family Panel study (pairfam; https://www.pairfam.de/en/) and were followed annually from ages 17 to 22. Results Latent growth models revealed that parent–child contact and conflict decreased, and parent–child closeness remained relatively stable from ages 17 to 22; youth coresidence with parents was associated with higher levels of youth‐ and parent‐reported contact and conflict, but youth student and relationship statuses were not related to changes in parent–child relations. Conclusion This study describes general patterns of parent–child relations in a transitional period and offers insights into the role of life course event status in changing parent–child relations. Findings reveal separation from parents along with connectedness, and provide support for understanding development in the context of linked lives.
Article
This study examined the moderating effect of parental income on the association between parent–child coresidence and parental affect. Secondary analysis was conducted with data from the ORANJ BOWL panel, a representative sample of adults in New Jersey, aged 50 to 74 years (N = 5,688). Results indicated that income had a significant moderating effect on the association between the adult child’s residential status and parents’ positive and negative affect. Among parents with coresident adult children, an observed decline in positive affect and rise in negative affect were amplified as parental income level increased, suggesting differential strains on parental well-being across income levels.
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For young adults in the general population, maintaining close bonds to parental figures and being able to rely on them in times of need contributes to positive adjustment in the transition to adulthood, yet, the consequences of transitioning to adulthood without strong bonds to family has received remarkably limited attention. This systematic review synthesizes information about the relationships aging out foster youth have with their birth or stepparents after legally mandated separations in foster care. Utilizing PRISMA guidelines, published and unpublished information from studies recruiting US-based samples were reviewed, yielding 16 articles from 10 studies. Findings indicate (1) a majority of studies have reported information about foster youths’ self-reported contact with birth parents and post-foster care living arrangements, and (2) fewer studies have sought to identify the types of support provided by birth parents or explored the benefits and risks that come from different types of support. This review identifies the strengths and weaknesses of the existing evidence, highlights avenues for future research, and offers guidance for establishing practices around facilitating relationships.
Article
Aim This study was undertaken to investigate how young people with and without mild intellectual disabilities experience and perceive their own behavioural autonomy. Method Fifty‐six young people with mild intellectual disabilities and 49 young people without disabilities aged 16–19 participated in a novel picture card sorting task to investigate their participation in a range of activities, and the obstacles preventing them from doing so. Results School pupils with intellectual disabilities engaged in significantly fewer activities than their typically developing peers and were more likely to state not to be allowed to. In contrast, the college students with and without disabilities were equally as likely to undertake each activity, and those with intellectual disabilities were more likely to express lack of interest in doing so. Conclusions The move from school to college may represent an opportunity for young people with intellectual disabilities to “catch‐up” with their typically developing peers.
Article
Due to extended transitions to adulthood and declining marital rates, bonds between adults and parents have grown increasingly salient in individuals' lives. This review organizes research around these topics to address ties between parents and grown children in the context of broader societal changes over the past decade. Literature searches included tables of contents of premier journals (e.g., Journal of Marriage and Family), Psychological Info, and Google Scholar. The literature review revealed patterns of social and intergenerational changes. Technological advances (e.g., introduction of the smart phone) co‐occurred with more frequent contact and interdependence between generations. The Great Recession and financial strains altered the nature of many parent/child ties, including increased rates of intergenerational coresidence. Individual life problems such as divorce, addiction, and physical health problems were reflected in complex changes in positive and negative relationship qualities, ambivalence, and intergenerational support. Government policies reflect societal values and in turn, affected the distribution of parents' and grown children's resources. Political disruptions instigated migration, separating generations across large geographic regions. Political disruptions instigated migration, separating generations across large geographic regions. Demographic changes (e.g., constellation of family members, delayed marriage, same sex marriage) were also manifest in ties between adults and parents. Findings were consistent with the Intergenerational Systems in Context Model, which posits that societal transformations co‐occur with changes in intergenerational relationships via reciprocal influences.
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This study focuses on clarifying the impact of the postponement of career decision-making after high-school graduation on life satisfaction among late adolescents, employing heterogeneous treatment effect analysis. Using the Korean Children and Youth Panel Survey (KCYPS), 1,629 high-school graduates were analyzed to address the determinants of the postponement of career decision-making in order to estimate propensity scores. With the propensity score analysis, a stratification-multilevel method for heterogeneous treatment effect hypothesis was conducted. Heterogeneous treatment effect hypothesized that there would be a much stronger association between life satisfaction and the postponement of career decision-making among the group who were more likely to postpone their careers after high-school graduation than among other groups. The results showed that adolescents who are men, graduated vocational high schools, have no college aspiration, and live in urban areas were more likely to postpone their decision-making on careers than their counterparts, respectively. And the postponement of career decision-making was negatively associated with life satisfaction among late adolescents and particularly the negative effect was stronger among the group showing higher propensity scores of being treated into the postponement of their career. The policy implications are addressed based on the research findings.
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National Guard members experience significant challenges surrounding deployment and reintegration. The supportive role of the relationship with a parent through the deployment cycle merits exploration. This longitudinal study of National Guard soldiers examined the relationship between soldier communication with one or more of their parents predeployment and mental health outcomes at reintegration and one year postdeployment. A stronger predeployment parent–soldier relationship is associated with good mental health outcomes at reintegration, and one year later. Additionally, communicating more frequently with a parent predeployment is indirectly associated with improved mental health outcomes, as long as the parent–soldier relationship is positive.
Article
This study examined parental support to emerging adults from a support gap perspective, which focuses on discrepancies between the amount of support received and the amount of support desired. Analyzing survey data collected from a sample of emerging adults in college (N = 341) with polynomial regressions and response surface modeling, the current study revealed that implications of support gaps differed by the support type, directionality of the discrepancy (i.e., support deficits or surpluses), and outcome of interest. For all types of support, emerging adults’ perceived stress was lowest when received and desired parental support were congruent. However, received–desired support congruence corresponded with the highest levels of relationship satisfaction only for informational support. For nurturant support (i.e., emotional, esteem, network support), a certain degree of support surplus corresponded with the highest level of relationship satisfaction, demonstrating an “optimal surpluses” phenomenon. Additionally, relationship satisfaction was higher when received and desired support from parents matched at a higher than at a lower level.
Article
This study used a support gap approach to examine parental support to college‐going emerging adults. Based on data from 156 parent–child dyads, this study investigated whether discrepancies between the amounts of support that children received from parents and what they desired would be associated with both persons’ perceived support quality and individual and relational well‐being. Using polynomial regressions with response surface modeling, analyses demonstrated that, generally, support deficits (i.e., receiving less support than desired) were associated with poorer outcomes. However, support surpluses (i.e., receiving more support than desired) were not necessarily problematic, and children and parents exhibited different viewpoints regarding support surpluses. In addition, child‐reported support quality mediated several associations between support gaps and relationship satisfaction reported by both persons.
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This article reviews research from the 1990s on trends in leaving home in the United States and presents new research on trends in returning home. These trends are placed within the context of two key theoretical considerations: changes in family roles and changes in the economic opportunities of young adults. The leaving home process in early adulthood is tied to changes in the core nuclear family relationships because those between parents and children shape the launch and those between men and women help to shape the destinations. The economic considerations include variation in income sources, particularly wages and transfers, and the costs of independent residence. These considerations underline the importance of taking a comparative perspective to the process of leaving home in the transition to adulthood.
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The concept of ambivalence represents an interactional process in which individuals evaluate social relations as simultaneously positive and negative. This study investigates ambivalence in interpersonal relations through an empirical analysis of relationships between aging mothers and their adult children from their joint perspectives. Multilevel models examine the influence of dependence on levels of ambivalence in relationship dyads as well as differences in levels of ambivalence between mothers and their adult children. Results suggest that ambivalence increases under conditions of potential dependence, rather than through the help that is more routinely exchanged among family members. Within the relationship, mothers experienced less ambivalence than their sons and daughters; overall findings demonstrate the importance of analyzing multiple perspectives in social relationships.
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I examine how midlife women, who came of age in the 1950s, compare their career accomplishments with those of their young adult daughters who came of age in the 1970s. Analyses are based on quantitative and qualitative data from the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study, which has tracked a sample of adults since their high school graduation in 1957. Nearly two-thirds of the mothers report that they have been less successful than their daughters; yet these unfavorable comparisons are linked only weakly to self-esteem. The open-ended interviews suggest that the mothers who rate themselves as “less successful” than their daughters maintain positive self-evaluations by characterizing their own decision to give family responsibilities priority over career pursuits as “in step” with their cohort peers; by attributing their less successful careers to cohort differences in the freedom to choose one's career; and by focusing on their daughters' difficulties in balancing work and family demands.
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The article aims to answer three questions: How strong are the bonds of obligations and expectations between generations? To what extent are different types of support exchanged between generations? What are the impacts of filial norms, opportunity structures and emotional bonds on the exchange of inter-generational support between adult children and older parents across societies? It reports findings from the five-country (Norway, England, Germany, Spain and Israel) OASIS study, which collected data from representative, age-stratified, urban-community samples of about 1,200 respondents in each country. The findings indicate that solidarity is general and considerable although the strengths of its dimensions vary by country. Most respondents acknowledged some degree of filial obligation, although the proportions were higher in Spain and Israel than in the northern countries, and there was greater variation in the tangible forms than in the expressed norms. Adult children were net providers of support, but older parents provided emotional support and financial help. Most support was provided to unmarried older parents with physical-function limitations. The effect of filial norms on help provision by adult children was moderate but significant and variable across the five countries, appearing more prescriptive in the south than in the north, where inter-generational exchanges were more open to negotiation. The findings demonstrate that cross-national analyses provide insights into both country-specific factors and the sometimes unexpected similarities among them.
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Recent studies suggest that parents maintain influence as their adolescents transition into college. Advances in communication technology make frequent communication between parents and college students easy and affordable. This study examines the protective effect of parent-college student communication on student drinking behaviors, estimated peak blood alcohol concentration (eBAC), and serious negative consequences of drinking. Participants were 746 first-year, first-time, full-time students at a large university in the United States. Participants completed a baseline and 14 daily Web-based surveys. Results: The amount of time spent communicating with parents on weekend days predicted the number of drinks consumed, heavy drinking, and peak eBAC, consistent with a protective within-person effect. No association between communication and serious negative consequences was observed. Encouraging parents to communicate with their college students, particularly on weekend days, could be a relatively simple, easily implemented protective process to reduce dangerous drinking behaviors.
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This article uses a panel study of children and mothers to examine how parents and children conceptualize, perceive, and report on their relationships with each other during the children's transition to adulthood years. The article provides strong support for the reliability and validity of reports of parent-child relationships. The article documents generally positive and supportive relationships between parents and children, more positive relationships with mothers than with fathers, and an improvement in relationships as children mature from age 18 to 23. Further, parent-child relationships are perceived differently by parents and children in that there is not just one perception of the relationship between child and parent, but a relationship as perceived by the child and a relationship as perceived by the parent. Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/67343/2/10.1177_019251395016005003.pdf
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Frank Furstenberg examines how the newly extended timetable for entering adulthood is affecting, and being affected by, the institution of the Western, particularly the American, family. He reviews a growing body of research on the family life of young adults and their parents and draws out important policy implications of the new schedule for the passage to adulthood. Today, says Furstenberg, home-leaving, marriage, and the onset of childbearing take place much later in the life span than they did during the period after World War II. After the disappearance of America's well-paying unskilled and semi-skilled manufacturing jobs during the 1960s, youth from all economic strata began remaining in school longer and marrying and starting their own families later. Increasing numbers of lower-income women did not marry at all but chose, instead, non-marital parenthood—often turning to their natal families for economic and social support, rather than to their partners. As the period of young adults' dependence on their families grew longer, the financial and emotional burden of parenthood grew heavier. Today, regardless of their income level, U.S. parents provide roughly the same proportion of their earnings to support their young adult children. Unlike many nations in Europe, the United States, with its relatively underdeveloped welfare system, does not invest heavily in education, health care, and job benefits for young adults. It relies, instead, on families' investments in their own adult children. But as the transition to adulthood becomes more protracted, the increasing family burden may prove costly to society as a whole. Young adults themselves may begin to regard childbearing as more onerous and less rewarding. The need to provide greater support for children for longer periods may discourage couples from having additional children or having children at all. Such decisions could lead to lower total fertility, ultimately reduce the workforce, and further aggravate the problem of providing both for increasing numbers of the elderly and for the young. U.S. policy makers must realize the importance of reinforcing the family nest and helping reduce the large and competing demands that are being placed on today's parents.
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Some theories suggest that negative relationship quality decreases with age, whereas others suggest that it remains stable. This study examined negative relationship quality over time, by relationship type, and by age. A total of 1,361 adults aged 20-93 years in 1992 and 840 adults in 2005 reported how much their spouse or partner, child, and best friend got on their nerves and made too many demands. Negative child relationship quality decreased over time among younger participants. Negative friend relationship quality decreased over time among people with a different friend but remained stable among people with the same friend. Negative spouse or partner relationship quality decreased over time among those who had a different partner but increased among those with the same partner. This study provides evidence of relationship-specific developmental trajectories in relationship quality.
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This study considered whether intergenerational ambivalence has implications for each party's psychological well-being and physical health. Participants included 158 families (N = 474) with a mother, a father, and a son or daughter aged 22 to 49 years. Actor-partner interaction models revealed that parents and offspring who self-reported greater ambivalence showed poorer psychological well-being. Partner reports of ambivalence were associated with poorer physical health. When fathers reported greater ambivalence, offspring reported poorer physical health. When grown children reported greater ambivalence, mothers reported poorer physical health. Fathers and offspring who scored lower in neuroticism showed stronger associations between ambivalence and well-being. Findings suggest that parents or offspring may experience greater ambivalence when the other party is in poorer health and that personality moderates associations between relationship qualities and well-being.
Chapter
Considerable controversy has centered on the role of social support in the stress process. Some theorists (Cassel, 1976; Cobb, 1976; Kaplan, Cassel, & Gore, 1977) have argued that support acts only as a resistance factor; that is, support reduces, or buffers, the adverse psychological impacts of exposure to negative life events and/or chronic difficulties, but support has no direct effects upon psychological symptoms when stressful circumstances are absent. Several studies confirm this buffering-only view of social support influences (sec Turner, 1983, for a review). Others (Thoits, 1982a, 1983c) have argued that lack of social support and changes in support over time are stressors in themselves, and as such ought to have direct influences upon psychological symptomatology, whether or not other stressful circumstances occur. A number of studies now confirm this main-effect view of social support influences (e.g., Andrews, Tennant, Hewson, & Vaillant, 1978; Aneshensel & Frerichs, 1982; Lin, Ensel, Simeone, & Kuo, 1979; Thoits, 1983b; Turner, 1981; Williams, Ware, & Donald, 1981). These studies report an inverse association between measures of support and indicators of psychological disturbance, and no stress-buffering effects at all.
Article
A theoretical framework is developed to explain how parent/adult child relationships affect adult children's and parents' psychological distress levels. Data from a 1986 national survey (n = 3,618) are analyzed to test hypotheses derived from this framework. Results show that (a) the quality of intergenerational relationships appears to be influenced by the structural circumstances of parents and adult children—especially as defined by divorced status, gender, and age; (b) the negative aspects of intergenerational relationships are more strongly associated with psychological distress of parents and adult children than are the positive aspects; and (c) the estimated effects of intergenerational relationships on distress levels sometimes depend on the structural circumstances of parents and children.
Article
A dominant theme in the literature on relationships between elderly parents and adult children is the role of parents as sources of stress and burden for their offspring. In contrast, the present article examines the effects of adult children's problems on elderly parents' psychological distress. Using data from a recent national survey of the elderly in Canada, the study demonstrates that parents whose adult children experienced serious problems reported greater depression. Further, the effect appears to be direct, rather than mediated by such factors as parent-child conflict, lack of provision of support by the child, or the child's dependency.
Article
A sample of parents (aged 50+) drawn from the 1988 and 1992 waves of the National Survey of Families and Households was used to examine two questions: How responsive is support from adult children in times of need? Is support from children greater for those who expected their children to provide help? Parents who experience one or more transitions in the time between survey waves are likely to receive help from their adult children over and above previous exchange patterns. Responsiveness on the part of children does not appear to be linked with parental expectations, however. Neither general value orientations about what children should do to support parents, nor expectations of help from one's own children in hypothetical situations are related to children's responsiveness to parental needs. Results are consistent with a contingent exchange perspective on intergenerational relationships.
Article
Patterns of agreement and disagreement on the quality of intergenerational relationships were explored in a sample of parents and young adult children. Data on parent-child closeness, contact, control, and conflict were taken from parent and child interviews in the longitudinal National Survey of Families and Households. Parents gave more positive reports than their adult child on six of the eight relationship indicators where parent and child answered identical questions. Parents were especially likely to report higher levels of closeness. Three patterns of dyadic agreement were identified: high agreement (54%), parent more positive than child (25%), and child more positive than parent (21%). Despite these differences in perspective, regression models predicting intergenerational closeness and conflict were nearly invariant across the parent and child data.
Article
This life-course analysis of family development focuses on the social dynamics among family members. It features parent-child relationships in a larger context, by examining the help exchange between kin and nonkin and the intergenerational transmission of family characteristics.
Article
This study investigates the following questions: whether greater affection between adult children and their parents leads to more social contact, whether frequent social contact leads to greater affection, or whether each of these mutually influences the other. Using nationally representative data collected in 1990 by the American Association of Retired Persons, we examine predictors of each dimension of solidarity and then estimate a causal model that tests the indirect and reciprocal influence among these dimensions. After finding a reciprocal influence between contact and affection in the mother-child relationship, but not in the father-child relationship, we conclude that the motivations for contact are different in adult-child relations with mothers compared to those with fathers. These differences are important for understanding the consequences of family disruption for intergenerational solidarity in adulthood. Also, parallels are drawn between parent-child relationships and voluntary friendships.
Article
This study uses data on support and contact in 4,055 parent-child dyads drawn from the Netherlands Kinship Panel Study to test explanations of reporting discrepancies, which focus on sources of bias and inaccurate reporting. Contrary to the generational stake hypothesis, parents’ reports are not characterized by a general positive bias. Consistent with notions of self-enhancement, parents and children overreport given help and underreport received help. Parents’ reports are susceptible to positive biases linked with strong feelings of family obligations. Limited evidence is found for an underreporting bias associated with dissatisfaction with support received from family. Positive reporting biases are observed in high-quality relationships. Consistent with expectations, results show greater reporting accuracy among better educated parents and children.
Article
Using data from the 1987 National Survey of Families and Households, this study examines the distribution and determinants of the geographic distance between elderly parents and their adult children. The majority of elderly Americans have at least one adult child living within 10 miles of their residence; for those with two or more adult children, the second-closest child is usually within 30 miles. Compared with the urban elderly, rural elders live farther from their second closest-children. Daughters live no closer than sons to their parents. The analysis shows that education and number of children are the most important factors in predicting parent-child proximity. Other factors, such as age, health, and the family size of the closest adult child, are also important.
Article
In this study, we integrate insights from the life-course and stress-process perspectives to argue that adult children's negative treatment of parents, as well as negative events that children experience, detrimentally affect elderly parents' mental health over time. We argue that these strains may affect mothers more than fathers, and blacks more than whites, because of the greater importance of the parental role to these groups in late life. Using data from more than 600 older African American and white parents over a four-year period, we show that negative treatment by adult children is positively related to changes in depression and anger, but effects on depression are limited to black parents and effects on anger are limited to mothers. Adult children becoming ill or unemployed positively relates to changes in distress over time, but only for black parents. Surprisingly, marital dissolution by adult children is related to decreases in anger for black parents. This research indicates that the social-psychological implications of the parental role do not end when children are adults; however, the influence on mental health in old age may vary by social status.
Article
Abstract We review research on the family's role in gender development during childhood and adolescence. Our discussion highlights children's dyadic family relationship experiences with their parents and siblings; additionally, we describe ways in which the larger system of family relationships, including gendered dynamics in the marriage and the differential family experiences of sisters versus brothers may have implications for gender development. We also emphasize the significance of contextual factors—ranging from situational demands and affordances to forces emanating from the larger social ecology—in family gender socialization. We conclude that family experiences may have a more important impact on gender development than has previously been believed, and we highlight directions for future study. These include: (1) applying more complex models of parent socialization and family dynamics to the study of the family's role in gender development; (2) expanding on research directed at the socialization of sex differences to study how family dynamics are linked to individual differences in girls’ and boys’ gendered qualities and behaviors; and (3) further exploring how contextual factors exert an impact on gender socialization in the family.
Article
Most parents and children are fortunate to share several decades of the life course when both parties are healthy adults. When parents reach the transition to old age, however, they typically experience health declines and both parties must adjust to changes in the relationship. The sample included older adults (aged 70+) suffering vision loss, hearing loss, or seeking general health care and a grown son or daughter (N=121 dyads, 242 individuals). Aging parents also suffered common health problems (e.g., hypertension, arthritis). Parents and offspring provided open-ended descriptions of changes and continuities in their relationship. Although prior studies link parental health declines to intergenerational ambivalence, most parents and offspring in this study mentioned positive changes in the relationship in recent years, regardless of parental health. Multilevel models revealed that perceptions of changes in parental health or receipt of support were associated with objective indicators of parental health. Findings suggest offspring's views of the relationship converge with parents’ when parents reach the transition to old age and show physical signs of aging.
Article
This article documents differentials in patterns of exchange of aid and assistance between elderly American parents and their non-coresidential adult children by marital status and other components of family structure using data drawn from the National Survey of Families and Households. Descriptive results show that overall levels of giving and receiving support between elderly parents and their adult children are not especially high. However, these patterns vary considerably by marital status of the aging parent and of their adult children, with widowed and divorced parents less likely to provide support to their children. In contrast, widowed but not divorced parents are significantly more likely to receive support. Even with controls for demographic and socioeconomic characteristics of the parents and availability of adult children, parents who are widowed or divorced give less to their children, although there are few marital-status differences for reception of support. The marital status of children appears to be less important to the exchange process. However, the proportion of children who are stepchildren exerts a strong negative influence on giving assistance to children. Among the other characteristics of family structure that exert an effect on exchanges, the number of adult children remains strongly positively associated with both giving and receiving most forms of support.
Article
Although social support researchers have long acknowledged the utility of social network analysis, few have shown the scope of analysis that is most useful to understanding how our social ties `buffer' us from adversity and `channel' us to other resources in times of trouble or transition. For the most part, researchers have limited their analyses to what Barnes (1969) and Mitchell (1969) call the `primary zone' (the links among and between the support receiver and those persons directly linked to him or her). In this article, it is suggested that expanding analysis to the network's `second-order zone' (the primary zone plus the ties between persons tied directly to support providers, but not to the receiver) enhances understanding of social support outcomes. To explore this thesis, the article examines social support and social network data from a field study of social support mobilization among low-income African-American women household heads in Chicago. I first attempt to explain observed social support outcomes by reference to primary zone variables (density and percentage of ties of `high' versus `low' intensity). These are found to be only partially successful. Next, second-order zone variables are added to the analysis. This improves our ability to explain outcomes. It is suggested future social support analysis should encompass the second-order zone.
Article
In this study, time diary data are used to assess trends in mothers' and fathers' child care time from the mid-1960s to the late 1990s. Contrary to conventional wisdom, the results indicate that both mothers and fathers report spending greater amounts of time in child care activities in the late 1990s than in the "family-oriented" 1960s. For mothers, there was a 1965-75 decline in routine child care time and then a 1975-98 rebound along with a steady increase in time doing more developmental activities. For 1998 fathers report increased participation in routine child care as well as in more "fun" activities. The ratio of married mothers' to married fathers' time in child care declined in all primary child care activities. These results suggest that parents have undergone a behavioral change that has more than countered family change that might otherwise have reduced time with children.
Article
Parent-offspring relationships in modern America are based more on emotional affection than on economic or cultural imperatives. The view is offered that certain relationships are more intense than others, and structural factors like geographic location and gender play a key role in defining the nature of parent-offspring ties. Interestingly, parents and offspring residing in the same geographical area often share strong affinities for their relationships. According to the author, geographical proximity permits a higher degree of intimacy and participation in day-to-day life than is possible with great separation by distance. The contention that frequent contact fosters emotional intensity is an important finding in the book. Evidence is also presented that mothers and daughters report deeper positive and deeper negative emotions than do fathers and sons in intergenerational relationships . The book is divided into 4 parts addressing the complexities of the mother-daughter relationship after mothers have begun to age, but are still healthy, active, and independent. Research included interviews with 48 mothers over the age of 70 and their adult daughters. Accordingly, the book limits its focus to the relations between this group of parents and their biological or adopted children. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Article
This study builds on research addressing intergenerational ambivalence by considering emotional ambivalence toward the wider social network. Men and women ages 13 to 99 (N = 187) completed diagrams of their close and problematic social relationships. Social ties were classified as solely close, solely problematic, or ambivalent, based on network placement (n = 3,392 social contacts). Multilevel models revealed that individuals viewed certain close familial ties (e.g., spouse, son or daughter, parent, sibling) with greater ambivalence than they viewed more distal family ties, friendships, or acquaintances. Participants classified more acquaintances than other relationships as solely problematic. Feeling closer to a social partner was associated with increased ambivalence. Older adults were more likely to classify their relationships as solely close than as ambivalent, in comparison with younger adults. Discussion focuses on tension and closeness in familial and nonfamilial relationships.
Article
Recent research suggests that intergenerational relations — the relationships between adult children and their parents in particular — are becoming increasingly important to Americans. Two main social forces appear to be driving these changes: marital instability and broader demographic shifts. Intergenerational relationships involve both affective ties and more instrumental forms of support such as financial resources or child care. Although actual material assistance tends to be episodic and primarily responsive to specific needs, these relationships appear to be durable and flexible and often fill in when marriage or other emotional attachments deteriorate. As such, intergenerational family relations may reflect adaptations to contemporary, postmodern economic and cultural conditions. Variations in these general patterns and dynamics are also exhibited, the most striking of which are those involving race and class. These variations are driven largely by social structure and position and suggest that intergenerational relations constitute an important and largely hidden aspect of how families contribute to the reproduction of social inequality in society. These findings reinforce the value of extending both scholarly and cultural notions of family beyond the traditional nuclear family model.
Article
This study sought evidence for the proposition that experiences with earlier-born adolescents will improve parents' interactions with and parenting of later-born adolescents. Participants were mothers, fathers, and both first- and second-born siblings from 392 families participating in a longitudinal study. To collect information on siblings' family experiences, family members were interviewed individually in their homes. During the subsequent 2 to 3 weeks, 7 evening telephone interviews were also conducted, which focused on siblings' daily activities. Findings suggest that when parent-adolescent relationships were measured at the same age for both siblings, parents experienced less conflict with their second-born as compared with their firstborn adolescent offspring and exhibited greater knowledge of their second-born offspring's daily activities as compared with their firstborns' daily experiences. These results are consistent with the notion that parents may learn from their childrearing experiences.
Article
This article reports on a study that incorporates two dimensions of complexity in intergenerational relations. First, the article focuses on ambivalence: the simultaneous existence of positive and negative sentiments in the older parent–adult child relationship. Second, the research described here applies a within-family design to the study of ambivalence, using a data set that includes 566 older mothers' assessments of ambivalence toward all of their adult children. The findings provide general support for our conceptual approach to parental ambivalence that highlights conflict between norms regarding solidarity with children and expectations that adult children should become independent. Lower ambivalence was related to an adult child's being married. Children's problems were positively associated with ambivalence, as was the mother's perception that exchange in the relationship was inequitable in the child's favor. Mother's health status and her perception that she and the child shared the same values were negatively associated with ambivalence. Finally, Black mothers reported higher levels of ambivalence than did White mothers, but the multivariate models explaining ambivalence did not vary by race.
Article
A series of meta-analyses addresses whether and how parent-child conflict changes during adolescence and factors that moderate patterns of change. The meta-analyses summarize results from studies of change in parent-child conflict as a function of either adolescent age or pubertal maturation. Three types of parent-adolescent conflict are examined: conflict rate, conflict affect, and total conflict (rate and affect combined). The results provide little support for the commonly held view that parent-child conflict rises and then falls across adolescence, although conclusions regarding pubertal change as well as conflict affect are qualified by the limited number of studies available. Two diverging sets of linear effects emerged, one indicating a decline in conflict rate and total conflict with age and the other indicating an increase in conflict affect with both age and pubertal maturation. In age meta-analyses, conflict rate and total conflict decline from early adolescence to mid-adolescence and from mid-adolescence to late adolescence; conflict affect increases from early adolescence to mid-adolescence. Puberty meta-analyses revealed only a positive linear association between conflict affect and pubertal maturation. Effect-size patterns varied little in follow-up analyses of potential moderating variables, implying similarities in the direction (although not the magnitude) of conflict across parent-adolescent dyads, reporters, and measurement procedures.
Article
The concept of ambivalence emphasizes the complexity of family relations and the potential for individuals to evaluate relationships as both positive and negative. Using multilevel models, we investigate ambivalence in adult children's relationships with their aging parents and in-laws (N= 1,599). We focus on factors predicting adult children's ambivalence toward parents and in-laws within a gendered kinship structure that shapes these relations. We conclude that ambivalence is a useful concept for representing the complexity of parent-child relationships and is produced within the context of social relations structured by gender and kinship. Results show greater ambivalence among dyads of women, toward in-laws, among those in poor health, for daughters providing assistance, and for adult children with poor parental relations in early life.