Better Off Alone Than With a Smoker: The Influence of Partner's Smoking Behavior in Later Life

TitleBetter Off Alone Than With a Smoker: The Influence of Partner's Smoking Behavior in Later Life
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsMargolis, R, Wright, L
JournalThe Journals of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences
Volume71
Issue4
Pagination687-697
Date Published02/2015
KeywordsAdult children, Couples, Health Conditions and Status, Older Adults, Smoking
Abstract

Objectives. We examine how the likelihood of smoking cessation among smokers and patterns of adherence to smoking cessation differ by partnership status, partnership changes, and partners smoking behavior. The data are a nationally representative sample of smokers in middle and older age from the Health and Retirement Study (1992 2010).Method. We use multivariate logistic regression models to analyze the likelihood of smoking cessation among smokers and then estimate adherence to smoking cessation using discrete-time event history models.Results. Those partnered with smokers and those whose partners relapse into smoking are much less likely than the unpartnered to quit smoking and adhere to smoking cessation. Respondents partnered with non-smokers and those whose partners quit smoking are more likely to quit smoking than the unpartnered. Those recently widowed, divorced, and repartnered have similar smoking changes to the consistently unpartnered.Discussion. Being partnered does not always mean healthier behavior changes. Rather, the association between partnership status and smoking changes depends greatly on the health behavior changes of the partner. The partnership context at the time of smoking cessation sets the stage for longer term patterns of adherence, shaping health in older age.

URLhttp://psychsocgerontology.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2015/02/17/geronb.gbu220.abstract
DOI10.1093/geronb/gbu220
Citation Key6446
PubMed ID25693998
PubMed Central IDPMC4903033