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Int J Aging Hum Dev. 2012;74(4):299-329.

Daily social exchanges and affect in middle and later adulthood: the impact of loneliness and age.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Notre Dame, IN 46656, USA.


Although daily social exchanges are important for well-being, it is unclear how different types of exchanges affect daily well-being, as well as which factors influence the way in which individuals react to their daily social encounters. The present study included a sample of 705 adults aged 31 to 91, and using Multilevel Modeling analyses investigated whether loneliness or age moderate the relationship between daily affect and daily social exchanges with family and friends. Results indicated differences between events involving family and those involving friends. Furthermore, lonelier individuals benefitted more from positive events than less lonely adults but were not more negatively reactive to negative events. Moreover, results suggested that older adults' affect is more independent of both positive and negative social events compared to younger people. Implications are discussed for the importance of daily social exchanges, daily social stress vulnerability, and the influences of loneliness across middle and later adulthood.

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