Intergenerational Coresidence, Support Transfers, and Psychological Wellbeing Among Older Persons in Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam CANCELLED

Saturday, July 19, 2014: 10:30 AM
Room: 304
Bussarawan TEERAWICHITCHAINAN , School of Social Sciences, Singapore Management University, Singapore, Singapore
Wiraporn POTHISIRI , College of Population Studies, Chulalongkorn University, Thailand
Long Thanh GIANG , National Economics University, Vietnam
We analyze data from 2011-2012 nationally representative aging surveys from Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam to examine the associations between coresidence with adult child, intergenerational transfers, and psychological health among older persons in developing and rapidly aging Southeast Asia. Specifically, we ask: 1) How does coresidence with adult child and proximity of children influence the psychological wellbeing of older persons? 2) To what extent are support transfers from children associated with elderly mental health? 3) Do support transfers from children fully account for the relationships between parent-child coresidence and older persons’ psychological health? 4) How do the associations between intergenerational coresidence, support transfers, and elderly mental wellbeing vary across the three societies? The mixture of commonalities and differences in political systems, cultural underpinnings, kinship systems, levels of development and degrees of population aging that characterize Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam render the comparative analysis particularly interesting. While a growing body of literature suggests that living arrangements of older adults are related to their psychological outcomes, most research focuses on the effect of living alone versus living with others, which may or may not include an adult child. Less is known about the effects of coresidence with an adult child and how cultural factors such as son preference come to play. There have not been any studies that examine the extent to which parent-child coresidence affects older persons’ psychological wellbeing in the developing Southeast Asian contexts. An absence of a coresidential child may adversely affect mental health of older persons. Clinical depression and depressive symptoms have been linked to greater healthcare utilization, higher spending on care, and higher mortality rates. Given the region's rapid population aging, decline in fertility rates, and unprecedented levels of young people’s migration, a decline in parent-child coresidence may have significant implications for public health system, policies, and planning.