ERIC Number: ED304594
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Nov
Patterns of Interaction with and Perceived Closeness to Adult Offspring by Older Adults in Middletown, U.S.A.
Morris, David C.
Relations between older adults and their adult offspring have been of considerable interest to social gerontologists. This study was conducted to examine patterns of intergenerational interaction and contact in a community setting. Telephone interviews were conducted with 400 residents over the age of 60. Items in the interview were taken from either Caplow's Middletown III study (the Kinship Survey) or the Commission on Aging Survey, with some items being modified for use in a telephone survey. The results revealed that 335 of the 400 respondents had one or more living children, with 74.3% of that group having at least one child living within 50 miles of the respondent. The findings showed that respondents seemed to feel that they had sufficient levels of contact with offspring, friends, neighbors, and confidants. Widowed respondents saw their children more often than did married respondents. Most respondents indicated they were not lonely. Income, gender, having children, marital status, and amount of contact with a confidant appeared to play a role in varying degrees of loneliness. Respondents who felt a stronger obligation to maintain contact with their children, who received more advice from their children, and who lived farther from those progeny expressed somewhat higher levels of "Closeness" to offspring. (NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Gerontological Society (41st, San Francisco, CA, November 18-22, 1988).