Due to cultural traditions, limited government assistance for young adults, and gaps in services for elderly adults in the US, family ties are a mainstay of support. Rewards and demands of providing and receiving support may have profound effects on each family member's well-being. The proposed study will collect a second wave of data from Family Exchanges Study (NIA R01AG027769) which interviewed 633 middle-aged adults, their grown children (n = 592), aging parents (n = 377) and spouses who were parents of the grown children (n = 197) about their relationships and exchanges of support in 2008. Over 36% of participants identified as racial minority. FES2 will provide an unprecedented opportunity to examine family exchanges over time, factors that influence exchanges, and implications of exchanges for individual physical and psychological health.
Aim 1) Describe and explain changes and continuity in support. FES2 will examine variability and identify factors that elicit changes in support over time. Family support may alter due to events in individual family members'lives or in the larger social context. The multi-reporter design of FES will illuminate how changes in support to one family member affect support of other family members.
Aim 2) Assess repercussions of receiving support over time. In FES1, many individuals received considerable support, but we know little about consequences of receiving support over time. We will assess effectiveness of support at FES1 in eliciting positive outcomes or deterring negative outcomes in FES2 for different family members.
Aim 3) Examine implications of providing support family support. We address a fundamental contradiction in the literature: whether providing family support is beneficial or detrimental to well-being. FES1 captured helping situations appraised as either stressful or rewarding. FES2 will begin to establish links between providing help under different conditions and individual physical and psychological health. A data collection burst will provide unique information regarding daily interactions between grown children and their parents as well as salivary hormones associated with stress (i.e., DHEA and cortisol). Most young adults and their parents report frequent contact and FES2 will be the first to examine their daily interactions. The dyadic data will provide insights into how each party's daily life affects the other and how daily interactions fit into broader relationship patterns. The hormones may provide physiological evidence for theories regarding implications of relationship qualities and support exchanges under stressful versus rewarding circumstances. In sum, FES2 will allow an unprecedented longitudinal examination of support exchanges within and between families from perspectives of multiple family members in a diverse sample. The parent-child tie is highly influential throughout life and has a large impact on psychological and physical health and mortality. This study has potential practical implications for improving support patterns and relationships within families and thus, individual health and well-being.

Public Health Relevance

Family ties are a mainstay of support for most Americans;most middle-aged adults offer support to generations above and below. Indeed, the parent child tie is highly influential throughout life and has a large impact on each party's physical and psychological health. Family Exchanges Study 2 (FES2) will build on data from a first wave of data to identify: (a) factors that elicit increased or decreased support among multiple family members, (b) consequences of receiving or providing support for individual well-being and (c) ways of improving family support exchanges and family relationships.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
Type
Research Project (R01)
Project #
5R01AG027769-07
Application #
8523714
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-RPHB-L (02))
Program Officer
Gerald, Melissa S
Project Start
2006-09-15
Project End
2016-05-31
Budget Start
2013-09-01
Budget End
2014-05-31
Support Year
7
Fiscal Year
2013
Total Cost
$457,907
Indirect Cost
$107,118
Name
University of Texas Austin
Department
Social Sciences
Type
Schools of Arts and Sciences
DUNS #
170230239
City
Austin
State
TX
Country
United States
Zip Code
78712
Bangerter, Lauren R; Kim, Kyungmin; Zarit, Steven H et al. (2015) Perceptions of Giving Support and Depressive Symptoms in Late Life. Gerontologist 55:770-9
Kim, Kyungmin; Zarit, Steven H; Birditt, Kira S et al. (2014) Discrepancy in reports of support exchanges between parents and adult offspring: within- and between-family differences. J Fam Psychol 28:168-79
Cichy, Kelly E; Lefkowitz, Eva S; Davis, Eden M et al. (2013) "You are such a disappointment!": negative emotions and parents' perceptions of adult children's lack of success. J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci 68:893-901
Hartnett, Caroline Sten; Furstenberg, Frank; Birditt, Kira et al. (2013) Parental support during young adulthood: Why does assistance decline with age? J Fam Issues 34:975-1007
Fingerman, Karen L; Sechrist, Jori; Birditt, Kira (2013) Changing views on intergenerational ties. Gerontology 59:64-70
Fingerman, Karen L; Cheng, Yen-Pi; Cichy, Kelly E et al. (2013) Help with "strings attached": offspring perceptions that middle-aged parents offer conflicted support. J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci 68:902-11
Cichy, Kelly E; Lefkowitz, Eva S; Fingerman, Karen L (2013) Conflict engagement and conflict disengagement during interactions between adults and their parents. J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci 68:31-40
Lee, Jeong Eun; Zarit, Steven H; Rovine, Michael J et al. (2012) Middle-aged couples' exchanges of support with aging parents: patterns and association with marital satisfaction. Gerontology 58:88-96
Fingerman, Karen L; Cheng, Yen-Pi; Birditt, Kira et al. (2012) Only as happy as the least happy child: multiple grown children's problems and successes and middle-aged parents' well-being. J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci 67:184-93
Fingerman, Karen L; Pillemer, Karl A; Silverstein, Merril et al. (2012) The Baby Boomers' intergenerational relationships. Gerontologist 52:199-209

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