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Death Stud. 2007 Jul;31(6):573-81.

An exploration of gender differences on the reasons for living inventory among older adults.

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Department of Psychology, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, Colorado Springs, CO 80933-7150, USA.


This study evaluated gender differences on the Reasons for Living Inventory (RFL) specifically among older adults, a population known to have the highest suicide rate among all age groups, with older men being disproportionately at risk. Community-dwelling women (n = 175; M age = 69.0 years; 81% Caucasian) and men (n = 145; M age = 69.5 years; 76% Caucasian) completed the RFL. Results showed no significant gender differences on the RFL subscales and the total score. The rank order of the subscales was also the same for older men and women. An implication of these findings is that the robust gender differences on the RFL found among younger individuals appear to diminish with advancing age, although it is unclear to what extent older men improve in the reasons for staying alive or older women decline in their reasons for staying alive.

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