ERIC Number: ED227378
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Life-Stresses: Do They Wax or Wane with Age?
Baskin, David; Beale, Claudette J.
There is a common perception that stresses tend to increase and accumulate with age, but there have been no definitive studies of differences in perceived life stress among different age groups. To study these differences, a quasi-random sample of 215 adults completed a 41 item life-stressor questionnaire, modified from the Paykel (1971) and Holmes and Rahe (1967) scales to include new stressors resulting from recent changes in environment, life styles, and family and gender roles. Results showed that with two exceptions (serious illness and moving residences within the same town or nearby) all age groups were statistically different on all the variables as well as the total stress variable, and that this was due to lower stress levels at older ages. Older people may have learned to deal with life stresses in a more constructive manner, or some stresses may not be as operant in older people's lives. The findings disprove the common misperception that growing older and retirement are necessarily negative occurrences. A series of tables is appended which provides information on subjects' occupational status, ethnic composition, educational background, income, and socioeconomic status as well as detailed statistical information on the life stress scores. (JAC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Life Events
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (90th, Washington, DC, August 23-27, 1982).