Parental marital disruption, family type, and transfers to disabled elderly parents.

TitleParental marital disruption, family type, and transfers to disabled elderly parents.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsPezzin, LE, Pollak, RA, Schone, BSteinberg
JournalJ Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci
Date Published2008 Nov
ISSN Number1079-5014
Call Numbernewpubs20090908/Pezzinetal.pdf
KeywordsAdult, Aged, Altruism, Divorce, Family Characteristics, Female, Frail Elderly, Gift Giving, Humans, Likelihood Functions, Longitudinal Studies, Male, Multivariate Analysis, Parent-Child Relations, Residence Characteristics, Siblings, United States

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of parental marital status, marital history, and family type on intergenerational living arrangements and adult children's time and cash transfers to their unpartnered disabled elderly parents.

METHODS: We used data from the Asset and Health Dynamics Among the Oldest Old survey to estimate the joint probabilities that an adult child provides time and/or cash transfers to a parent and to analyze a five-level categorical variable capturing parent-child living arrangements.

RESULT: The estimates suggest significant detrimental effects of parental divorce and step relationship on time transfers and on the probability of coresidence with the index child. Family type, as captured by the composition of the index child's sibling network according to kin relationship to the parent, also affected transfers and living arrangement choices of adult children.

DISCUSSION: The findings that transfers from adult children to their unpartnered disabled elderly parents depend on parental marital status and kin relationship suggest that changing family patterns are altering the traditional role of the family as a support network. These findings raise concerns about the care likely to be available to future cohorts of elderly persons who will have experienced substantially higher rates of divorce, remarriage, and step parenthood than the cohort considered in this study.

User Guide Notes

Endnote Keywords

Divorce/Family Structure/Intergenerational Transfers/Caregiving

Endnote ID


Alternate JournalJ Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci
Citation Key7271
PubMed ID19092044
Grant List1 R01 AG24049 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
R01 AG025475 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States