Impact of Husbands' Involuntary Job Loss on Wives' Mental Health, Among Older Adults

TitleImpact of Husbands' Involuntary Job Loss on Wives' Mental Health, Among Older Adults
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2003
AuthorsSiegel, MJ, Bradley, EH, Gallo, W, Kasl, SV
JournalThe Journals of Gerontology: Social Sciences
Volume58B
Issue1
PaginationS30-S37
Call Numberpubs_2003_Siegel_etal.pdf
KeywordsEmployment and Labor Force
Abstract

Objectives. This study estimates the consequences of older husbands' involuntary job loss for their wives' mental healthMethods. Using longitudinal data from the 1992, 1994, and 1996 waves of the Health and Retirement Study, multivariate regression models were estimated to measure the impact of older husbands' involuntary job loss on wives' mental health. We created two longitudinal data sets of two waves each to use in our analysis. The first data set, or period, combined Waves I and 2 of the Health and Retirement Study and described the 1992-1994 experience of spouse pairs in our sample. It included the wives of 55 husbands who experienced involuntary job loss between these survey dates and a comparison group of wives of 730 continuously employed husbands. The second data set described the 1994-1996 experience of couples. In particular, it included the wives of an additional 38 husbands who were displaced from their jobs between Waves 2 and 3, and a compar ison group of wives of 425 husbands who were continuously employed from 1994 to 1996.Results. Husbands' involuntary job loss did not have a statistically significant effect on wives' mental health. We found no evidence that changes in husbands' depressive symptoms modified the effect of his job loss on wives' mental health. In the first period only, the effect of husbands' job loss on wives' mental health was more pronounced for wives who were more financially satisfied at baseline.Discussion. There is limited evidence among this cohort that husbands' job loss increases wives' subsequent depressive symptoms. However, the effect of husbands' job loss on wives' mental health appears to be magnified when wives report being financially satisfied pre-job loss. This suggests that, for subgroups of older couples, mental health services specifically targeted at displaced men should also be made available to wives.

URLhttp://psychsoc.gerontologyjournals.org/
Endnote Keywords

Job Loss/Unemployment/Older Workers

Endnote ID

11892

Citation Key6868