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Res Aging. 2015 Jul;37(5):524-51. doi: 10.1177/0164027514545482. Epub 2014 Aug 19.

Geographic proximity of adult children and the well-being of older persons.

Author information

1
Faculty of Spatial Sciences, Population Research Centre, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands m.van.der.pers@rug.nl.
2
Faculty of Spatial Sciences, Population Research Centre, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.
3
Faculty of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Department of Sociology, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands University Medical Center Groningen, Department of Health Sciences, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands Department of Sociology, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.

Abstract

This article aims to contribute to the discussion of how adult children affect the well-being of their older parents by investigating the importance of living in close geographic proximity. We investigate whether having children at all, and/or having them geographically proximate, contributes differently to the well-being of older persons living with and without a partner. We enriched survey data for the Netherlands (N = 8,379) with municipal register data and regressed life satisfaction of persons aged 65+ on having children and three different measures of geographic proximity. Having children contributes to the well-being of older men with a partner. There is evidence for a positive association between proximity of children and parental well-being, in particular for widowed and separated mothers and for separated fathers. Our findings suggest that close proximity may be a condition under which adult children can significantly add to the well-being of widowed and separated mothers and separated fathers.

KEYWORDS:

The Netherlands; intergenerational geographic proximity; life satisfaction; older persons; parenthood; register data; well-being

PMID:
25651582
DOI:
10.1177/0164027514545482
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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