Nonkin in older adults’ personal networks: more important among later cohorts?

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Abstract

Objectives. Research on age-related changes in personal networks has found compelling evidence for socioemotional selectivity theory and exchange theory holding that older adults experience a decline in less emotionally close nonkin relations as they age. However, recent societal developments are likely to have increased the salience of nonkin relations. We hypothesize that age-related decline in the proportion of nonkin in personal networks has been delayed or is slower in late birth cohorts of older adults compared with earlier cohorts. Method. Seven observations by the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam covering a time span of 17 years since 1992 were analyzed using multilevel regression analysis. The sample had 12,949 person-year observations from 3,516 respondents born between 1908 and 1937. Results. Age-related decline in the proportion of nonkin is absent for cohorts born after 1922 and large for cohorts born in 1922 and before. Mediating variables for health and other resources did not explain cohort differences in age-related change. Discussion. The salience of nonkin relationships is likely to have increased due to societal changes, resulting in absence or delay of decline in later cohorts. The findings raise the need for a reevaluation of old age and the creation of new theoretical perspectives. © The Author 2013.
LanguageEnglish
Pages633-643
JournalJournals of Gerontology. Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences
Volume68
Issue number4
Early online date24 May 2013
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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Multilevel Analysis
Health Resources
Longitudinal Studies
Regression Analysis
Parturition
Research
exchange theory
multi-level analysis
old age
regression analysis
Surveys and Questionnaires
human being
health
resources
evidence
experience

Cite this

@article{dbdf5eb608814c43b53143312608af02,
title = "Nonkin in older adults’ personal networks: more important among later cohorts?",
abstract = "Objectives. Research on age-related changes in personal networks has found compelling evidence for socioemotional selectivity theory and exchange theory holding that older adults experience a decline in less emotionally close nonkin relations as they age. However, recent societal developments are likely to have increased the salience of nonkin relations. We hypothesize that age-related decline in the proportion of nonkin in personal networks has been delayed or is slower in late birth cohorts of older adults compared with earlier cohorts. Method. Seven observations by the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam covering a time span of 17 years since 1992 were analyzed using multilevel regression analysis. The sample had 12,949 person-year observations from 3,516 respondents born between 1908 and 1937. Results. Age-related decline in the proportion of nonkin is absent for cohorts born after 1922 and large for cohorts born in 1922 and before. Mediating variables for health and other resources did not explain cohort differences in age-related change. Discussion. The salience of nonkin relationships is likely to have increased due to societal changes, resulting in absence or delay of decline in later cohorts. The findings raise the need for a reevaluation of old age and the creation of new theoretical perspectives. {\circledC} The Author 2013.",
author = "B. Suanet and {van Tilburg}, T.G. and {Broese Van Groenou}, M.I.",
year = "2013",
doi = "10.1093/geronb/gbt043",
language = "English",
volume = "68",
pages = "633--643",
journal = "Journals of Gerontology. Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences",
issn = "1079-5014",
publisher = "Gerontological Society of America",
number = "4",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Nonkin in older adults’ personal networks: more important among later cohorts?

AU - Suanet, B.

AU - van Tilburg, T.G.

AU - Broese Van Groenou, M.I.

PY - 2013

Y1 - 2013

N2 - Objectives. Research on age-related changes in personal networks has found compelling evidence for socioemotional selectivity theory and exchange theory holding that older adults experience a decline in less emotionally close nonkin relations as they age. However, recent societal developments are likely to have increased the salience of nonkin relations. We hypothesize that age-related decline in the proportion of nonkin in personal networks has been delayed or is slower in late birth cohorts of older adults compared with earlier cohorts. Method. Seven observations by the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam covering a time span of 17 years since 1992 were analyzed using multilevel regression analysis. The sample had 12,949 person-year observations from 3,516 respondents born between 1908 and 1937. Results. Age-related decline in the proportion of nonkin is absent for cohorts born after 1922 and large for cohorts born in 1922 and before. Mediating variables for health and other resources did not explain cohort differences in age-related change. Discussion. The salience of nonkin relationships is likely to have increased due to societal changes, resulting in absence or delay of decline in later cohorts. The findings raise the need for a reevaluation of old age and the creation of new theoretical perspectives. © The Author 2013.

AB - Objectives. Research on age-related changes in personal networks has found compelling evidence for socioemotional selectivity theory and exchange theory holding that older adults experience a decline in less emotionally close nonkin relations as they age. However, recent societal developments are likely to have increased the salience of nonkin relations. We hypothesize that age-related decline in the proportion of nonkin in personal networks has been delayed or is slower in late birth cohorts of older adults compared with earlier cohorts. Method. Seven observations by the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam covering a time span of 17 years since 1992 were analyzed using multilevel regression analysis. The sample had 12,949 person-year observations from 3,516 respondents born between 1908 and 1937. Results. Age-related decline in the proportion of nonkin is absent for cohorts born after 1922 and large for cohorts born in 1922 and before. Mediating variables for health and other resources did not explain cohort differences in age-related change. Discussion. The salience of nonkin relationships is likely to have increased due to societal changes, resulting in absence or delay of decline in later cohorts. The findings raise the need for a reevaluation of old age and the creation of new theoretical perspectives. © The Author 2013.

U2 - 10.1093/geronb/gbt043

DO - 10.1093/geronb/gbt043

M3 - Article

VL - 68

SP - 633

EP - 643

JO - Journals of Gerontology. Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences

T2 - Journals of Gerontology. Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences

JF - Journals of Gerontology. Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences

SN - 1079-5014

IS - 4

ER -