Week 11 readings – notes .docx

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Department
Health Sciences
Course
Health Sciences 2711A/B
Professor
Aleksandra Zecevic
Semester
Winter

Description
Week 11 readings – notes Chap 16; Emotional and social development in middle adulthood (423 – 441) Stability and change in self-concept & personality Possible selves: • Future oriented representations of what one hopes to become and what one is afraid of becoming. They are temporal dimension of self-concept, what they’re striving for and attempting to avoid • Strong motivator for action in midlife (need to maintain sense of unachieved possibility and feel good at same time) • People rely less on social comparisons and more on how they’re doing w/ how they palnned • Early 20s = many possible selves – lofty & idealistic • Older = less possible selves – since future doesn’t hold unlimited opps, more modest & concrete, concerned w/ performance & responsibility Self-acceptance, autonomy & environmental mastery: • Mix of competencies & exp = change in aspects of personality in mid adulthood • Midlife= social roles peak, status at work increases, 3 qualities increase from early-mid adult o Self acceptance: mid aged acknowledged their good and bad qualities, still feel + about self & life o Autonomy: less concerned w/ other’s expectations, more w/ self-chosen standards o Environmental mastery: capable of managing a complex array of tasks easily & effectively • Midlife is a time for increased comfort w. self, independence, assertiveness, commitment to personal values & life satisfaction (the prime of life) • Psychological well being differs among cohorts (time of birth) Coping w/ daily stressors: • Midlife adults perceive stressors are disruptive and unpleasant, usually about finances and children • They increase in effective coping strategies, can ID the + in situations, postpone action to evaluate alternatives, plan, us humor to express ideas… they draw on problem centered & emotion centered strategies • Personality changes support effective coping strategies, blending strengths and weaknesses = organized pictures b/w gains in emotional stability & confidence Gender ID • Levinson’s theory: gender ID in midlife becomes more androgynous, a mix of feminine & masculine characteristics • Women become more confident and self sufficient, and forceful, men become more emotional, sensitive, caring, considerate, dependent • Parental imperative theory: ID w/ traditional gender roles is maintained through parenting years to rear them effectively. But as soon as they leave home, they adopt other gender traits Week 11 readings – notes • Women need self-reliance and assertiveness in work circumstances w/ discrimination… • If they cant integrate other gender traits, they tend to have mental probs, cant adapt flexibly to challenges of aging Individual diff’s in personality traits • Big 5 personality traits o Neuroticism: high in this = worrying, temperamental, self pitying, self conscious, emotional, vulnerable (declines from teen – midlife) o Extroversion: affectionate, talkative, active, fun-loving, passionate (don’t change/decrease slightly) o Openness to exp: imaginative, creative, original, curious, liberal (don’t change/decrease slightly) o Agreeableness: soft hearted, trusting, generous, acquiescent, lenient, good- natured. (Increase from teen to midlife) o Conscientiousness: conscientious, hard working, well-organized, punctual, ambitious and persevering (increase from teen to midlife) • Personality changes are genetically influenced, but the big 5 are usually stable • Adults change in overall organization and integration of personality, but remain as “open systems” when they respond to pressures of life exp Relationships at midlife: • Majority of middle aged adults live with others (9/10) • People tend to have larger number of close relationships during midlife than any other period • Middle adulthood phase of family life cycle is referred to as “launching of children and moving on” which implies a negative transition- can trigger feelings of emptiness and regret • But most middle aged parents adjust well to the launching phase of the family life cycle • Because of increased life expectancy has caused this period to lengthen, it is marked by the greatest number of exits and entries of family members Marriage and Divorces • Marital satisfaction is a strong predictor for midlife psychological well-being • Following divorce middle aged men and women reported less decline in psychological well being than their younger counterparts • Feminization of poverty: a trend in which women who support themselves or their families have become the majority of the adult population living in poverty, regardless of age and ethnic groups Changing Parent- Child Relationships • Many young people form low SES homes and cultural traditions of extended family living do not leave home early • Once young adults strike out on their own, members of the middle generation, especially mothers usually take on the role of kinkeeper: gathering the family for celebrations Grandparenthood • On average American adults become grandparents in there mid to late forties, Canadians in their late forties to early fifties • Includes: Week 11 readings – notes o Valued elder- being perceived as wise and helpful o Immortality through descendants, 2 generations o Reinvolvement with personal past o Indulgence- having children without major child-rearing responsibilities • Relationships are closer between grandparents and grandchildren of the same sex, especially maternal grandmother and granddaughters • Grandmothers also report higher satisfaction with the grandparent role than grandfathers • In low income families, grandparents are more likely to perform essential activities • In some cultures grandparents are absorbed into an extended family household and become actively involved in child rearing when parents are at work • Grandparents who take full responsibility for young children experience considerable emotional and financial strain • Parents are gatekeepers for grandparent’s contact, strongly affect closeness of grandparent-grandchild ties • Skipped generation families: live with grandparents but apart form their parents Middle Aged Children and Theiring Aging Parents o Longer LE means that adult children are growing old with their parents, they tend to live together too o When elders move they usually move towards kin and younger adults moved in the direction of their aging parents o In the non-western world older adults most often live with their married children- pattern is changing though. Sometimes this happens after a sudden problem (heart attack) and diff lifestyles/beh have stressful impacts o Positive parent-child ties and conflict ridden interaction tend to remain o Parent- child help decrease with age whereas child- to parent help increases o Sandwich generation: the idea that middle aged adults must care for multiple generations above and below them at the same time o African American and Hispanic adults give aging parents more financial help and direct care than Caucasian- American adults do o In all ethnic groups responsibility for providing care to aging parents falls more on daughters than sons, or to the person that is more available o Both sex provide equal care, just diff from gender role o As adults move from early to later middle age, the sex difference in parental care giving declines (men become more feminine and step up) o Parent care giving can lead to role overload- conflict among employment, spouse, parent, and elder care roles Siblings o Sibling contact and support decline from early to middle adulthood, rebounding only after age 70 for siblings that live near each other o But they still feel closer at midlife due to major life event o As in early adulthood, sister-sister relationship are closer than sister-brother and brother- brother ties o In industrialized nations sibling relationships are voluntary, in village societies they are generally involuntary and basic to family functioning o Good relationships often become better and rotten relationships get worse Friendships Week 11 readings – notes o At all ages men are less expressive than women with friends o Women report greater number of close friends and say they both receive and provide their friends with more emotional support o For both sexes the number of friends declines with age, less willing to invest in nonfam ties unless really rewarding o Selectivity of friendship, they try harder to get along o Family ties: protect against threats/losses, security in long-term o Friendships: current sources of pleasure and satisfaction o Spouse as best friend = (Y) Vocational Life (midlife transitions) • Attempt to increase personal meaning and self direction • Older workers will rise dramatically over next decades Job Satisfaction  Increases in midlife at all occupational levels (trend weak for females & of color)  Intrinsic satisfaction- happiness with work itself (increase)  Extrinsic satisfaction- contentment with supervision, pay and promotions (changes very little)  Increased capacity to cope effectively in diff situation  Older adults reduce career aspirations since perceived gap b/w actual & possible achievements narrow, importance on self esteem increases  Burnout: long term job stress leads to mental exhaustion, a sense of loss of personal control and feelings of reduced accomplishments. Happens more in helping professions, work exceeds time available Career Development o Women and ethnic minorities face a glass ceiling or invisible barrier to advancement up the corporate ladder o So women need to demonstrate greater competence than males o Personal & workplace characteristics influence willingness to engage in job training/updating Planning fro Retirement o Retirement is no longer a privilege reserved for the wealthy, starts as soon as you think about it in midlife o Governments pay social security to the majority of the aged, and others are covered by employers based private pension plans o Average age of retirement has declined (62 in Canada), income & status drops so planning is important o Spending time in interests rather than obligations = (Y) o Unfortunately less well-educated people with lower life- time earning are least likely to attend retirement preparation programs- yet they stand to benefit the most o Women do less planning often depending on their husbands preparations Chap 17; health care (462 – 463) Cost of Health Care for the Elderly Week 11 readings – notes  Estimated that the cost of Medicare for the elderly will double by 2025 and nearly triple by 2050 as baby boom generation reached late adulthood and average life expectancy extends further  Advanced aging is strongly associated with long-term care services especially nursing homes  Dementia (especially Alzheimer’s) followed by arthritis, hip fracture and stroke most often lead to long term care facility use  Most Canadian provinces provide some long term care coverage but it is limited  The largest users of nursing homes are people with either low or high incomes  Nursing home use also varies across ethnic groups  Causcasian Americans are nearly twice as likely as African Americans to be institutionalized  Because of families strong sense of care giving responsibility Asian, Hispanic, Native- American and Canadian Aboriginal elders use nursing homes less often then north American Caucasians  To reduce institutionalization of the elderly and associated high costs experts have advocated for alternatives o Publicly funded in-home help for family caregivers o Assisted living- cost-effective homelife housing arrangement for seniors who require extra care (enhance autonomy, social life, life satisfaction) Chap 18; stability & change in self concept and personality (476-481) • Stability of big 5 personality traits continue • Ingredients of ego integrity: wholeness, contentment, image of self = reflected in other late life changes Secure and multifaceted self-concept • Life defining memories all have consistent themes like relationships or personal independence despite physical/cognitive/occupational changes • Most elders in 80s actively pursue their hope for selves (improving/achieving/attaining) in areas of physical health/cognitive fxn and personal characteristics + relationships & social responsibility • Third age: added years of longevity and health plus financial stability granted an active, opportunistic time to life so that many contemporary seniors believe in a new phase of late adulthood Resilience: agreeableness & acceptance of change • Flexible/optimistic approach to life fosters resilience in face of aderisty • Elders gain in agreeableness- more generous & acquiescent, good natured in late life o Usually for people who have come to terms w/ life despite imperfections • Dips inextraversion/openness to exp o Prolly from narrowing of social contacts o Those who were extravert tend to remain that way • Development in acceptance of change, good for psychological well-being. They develop effective coping strategies (specially in terms of coping w/ loss of loved ones) vital for adaptive fxning in late adulthood Week 11 readings – notes • Most oadults are resilient: jump back in face of adversity, especially the ones who were already so, good capacity for + emotion is really helpful for resilience • Cheerfulness helps strengthen physiological resistance • Elders w/ high neuroticism: - emotions, short temper… cope poorly w/ stress Spirituality and religiosity • Spirituality: =/= religion, inspirational sense of life’s meaning. Found in art/nature/social relationships • Religion: provides beliefs, symbols and rituals that guide the quest for meaning • Elders have great value for religious belief • Generally become more religious/spiritual w/ age (not a universal trend) o Most elders are stable w/ religion over time o ¼ are less religions since they didn’t help them thru tough times o Overall spirituality and faith advance o a higher level in late adulthood • Low SES ethnic minority elders tend to involve selves in informal religious activities o African American, Hispanic, native-Americans o African Americans elders look at religion as power resource of social support • Women are more likely than men to report importance in religion • Women have higher rates of poverty/widowhood/caregiving = more stress = turn to religion for social support • Religious involvement = diverse benefits: better physical/psych wellbeing, more time for exercise and leisure, better sense of closeness w/ fam & friends Contextual influences on psych wellbeing • Personal + situation factors combine to affect psych wellbeing • Control vs dependency: o Dependency- support script: dependent behaviors are attended to immediately o Independence-ignore script: independent behaviors are mostly ignored o Interactions w/ others = high satisfaction for people w/ NO difficulties w/ ADL o People w/ trouble performing ADL have a less + view a feel indebted/weak during social interactions (assisting w/ physical care)  This depends on quality of help, caregiver-elder relationship, social/cultural context o Dependency can be adaptive if it permits elders to remain in control by choosing where they need help, so they can conserve strength for valuable activities (selective optimization w/ compensation) • Physical health: o Physical illness resulting in disability is among the strongest risk factors for late- life depression (lethal), can lead to social isolation (strong physical impairment- depression link) o Perceived (-) physical health predicts depressive symptoms o People age 65 and older have the highest suicide rate of all age groups o This can be addressed with effective coping and a sense of self-efficacy as well as families and caregivers must grant elders autonomy by avoiding the dependency- support script • (-) Life changes Week 11 readings – notes o Difficult for everyone, but evoke less stress/depression for older people since they’ve learned to cope and appraise (-) changes as common/expected o Changes are greater for women than men, less likely to be married, lower incomes/more illness (decreased mobility) o Social relations can also be a source of stress when people are dependent on them but they’re unable to meet the other’s needs = (-) self estem and lower sense of psychological wellbeing than men • Social support o Social support continues to reduce stress increasing the odds of living longer o When assistance is excessive or cannot be returned it often results in psychological distress. (First comes from spouse, children, siblings, other relatives/friends) o Good to have formal & informal support so they don’t feel like they owe us anything & relieve us from caregiving burdens o Ethinic minority elders accept more help from churches, they feel like they genuinely care, not obligated – highest mental health o Unwanted/unneeded help = exaggerates their weakness and undermines mental health = disuses of skill & accelerate physical disability o Perceived social support: elder’s sense of being able to count on fam/friends in time sof need = + outlook VS the amount of help has little impact o Extraverted elderlies take advantage of assistance and engage w/ others = decreased loneliness/depression & increase SE & life satisfaction o Quantity of contact doesn’t have much impact, quality (kindness/encouragemen
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