Gender, Work and Family Dynamics of Adult Children’s Time Transfers to Their Widowed Elderly Parents: An Analysis of Married Dyads

Ching-Yi A. Shieh, National Institutes of Health (NIH)

This project examines how married adult children’s gender, employment and family dynamics affect the amounts of activities of daily living and independent activities of daily living time transferred to their widowed parents. Using data from the recently released 2006 Health and Retirement Study, multivariate regression analysis indicates that adult children with higher wage rates and longer weekly work hours provide less time. There is no indication that wage rates and work hours influence sons’ and daughters’ provision of support differently. While the transfers of siblings may substitute for adult children in family caregiving practices, assistance provided by the spouses of adult children to the parents complement, but do not replace, adult children’s transfers. Adult children take the needs of their aging spouses and parents into consideration when they allocate transfer resources. Simulation of transfer probabilities shows that daughters’ transfers are more affected by the wages and work hours of their spouses than sons’.

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Presented in Session 87: Generational Exchanges and Relationships: Adult Children and Elderly Parents