Familism, Social Network Characteristics, and Well-being among Older Adults in Mexico
- 577 Downloads
Familism, is a cultural value considered to be central to Mexican culture. Older generations are thought to more strongly adhere to familistic values; however, little is known about the implications of familism in late-life. The goal of the current study was to examine links between familism, social network characteristics, and well-being among Mexican older adults. A sample of 556 older adults (50–99 years old) was drawn from the Study of Social Relations and Well-being in Mexico. Various aspects of social network characteristics and familism varied by age, gender, and education status. Familism was correlated with contact frequency and geographic proximity, but not proportion of family in network. Regression analyses indicated higher familism was associated with better psychological and physical well-being, yet familism interacted with proportion of family to predict both self-rated health and chronic conditions indicating that a discrepancy between familistic values and actual family support may be detrimental for older Mexicans’ physical health. The discussion highlights the complex interrelationships and potential protective effects of familism. Future research should continue to examine the implications of familism and family relationships in the Mexican context; in particular, how generational shifts in familism influence intergenerational relations and well-being.
KeywordsAging Familism Mexico Social networks
This research was supported in part by the U.S. State Department’s Fulbright Program (Fulbright Robles Garcia Grant) and the Daniel Katz Dissertation Fellowship from the Institute of Social Research at the University of Michigan. We would like to acknowledge the members of the University of Michigan's Life Course Development research group and three anonymous reviewers who provided helpful feedback on an earlier version of this manuscript.
- Aguila, E., Díaz, C., Fu, M. M., Kapteyn, A., & Pierson, A. (2011). Envejecer en México: condiciones de vida y salud. AARP/Centro Fox/Rand Corporation.Google Scholar
- Antonucci, T. C. (1986). Measuring social support networks: hierarchical mapping technique. Generations, X(4), 10–12.Google Scholar
- Antonucci, T. C., Birditt, K. S., & Ajrouch, K. J. (2011). Convoys of social relations: past, present and future. Handbook of life span development, 161–182.Google Scholar
- Fuller-Iglesias, H. R., & Antonucci, T. (2015). Convoys of social support in Mexico Examining socio-demographic variation. International Journal of Behavioral Development. doi: 10.1177/0165025415581028.
- Garcia, A. (1999). The Latino family in transition. In M. Sotomayor & A. Garcia (Eds.), La familia: traditions and realities (pp. 1–14). Washington, DC: National Hispanic Council on Aging.Google Scholar
- Groves, R. M., & Couper, M. P. (2012). Nonresponse in household interview surveys. John Wiley & Sons. doi: 10.1002/9781118490082.
- Heller, P. L. (1970). Familism scale: a measure of family solidarity. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 73–80.Google Scholar
- INEGI. (Instituto Nacional de Estadística, Geografía e Informática - National Institute for Statistics, Geography, and Information). (2005). Interactive data analysis, Mexican decennial censuses, count of population and housing, www.inegi.gob.mx/est/contenidos/espanol/proyectos/conteos/conteo2005/bd/consulta2005/metadatos/introduccion.asp
- Kahn, R. L., & Antonucci, T. C. (1980). Convoys over the life course: attachment, roles, and social support. In P. B. Baltes & O. C. Brim (Eds.), Life-span, development, and behavior (pp. 254–283). New York: Academic.Google Scholar
- Keeler, A. R., Siegel, J. T., & Alvaro, E. M. (2013). Depression and Help Seeking Among Mexican–Americans: The Mediating Role of Familism. Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health, 1–7. Doi: 10.1007/s10903-013-9824-6.
- Kinsella, K. G., & Phillips, D. R. (2005). Global aging: the challenge of success (Vol. 60). Washington, DC: Population Reference Bureau. No. 1.Google Scholar
- Montes de Oca, V. (2010). Families and Intergenerational Solidarity in Mexico: Challenges and Opportunities. Family Support Networks and Population Ageing, Qatar Foundation, UNFPA, Northwestern University, UN Programme on Ageing, pp. 107–111.Google Scholar
- Passel, J. S., D’Vera Cohn, G. B. A., & Gonzalez-Barrera, A. (2012). Net migration from Mexico falls to zero--and perhaps less. Washington, DC: Pew Research Center.Google Scholar
- Rolwing, K. (2006). Education in Mexico. World education news and reviews, 19(3), http://www.wes.org/ewenr/06jun/practical.htm.
- Sánchez-García, S., Juárez-Cedillo, T., García-González, J. J., Espinel-Bermúdez, C., Gallo, J. J., Wagner, F. A., et al. (2008). Usefulness of two instruments in assessing depression among elderly Mexicans in population studies and for primary care. Salud Pública de México, 50(6), 447–456.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Schwartz, S. J., Weisskirch, R. S., Hurley, E. A., Zamboanga, B. L., Park, I. J. K., Kim, S. Y., & Greene, A. D. (2010). Communalism, familism, and filial piety: are they birds of a collectivist feather? Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 16, 548–560. doi: 10.1037/a0021370.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- United Nations. (2005). World population prospects: The 2004 revision. New York, NY: UN.Google Scholar
- Zepeda, E. Y., Valle, E. D. V., & Martínez, A. L. T. (2005). Factores asociados a la corresidencia de los adultos mayores de 50 años por condición rural-urbana. Papeles de Población, 11(45), 29–48.Google Scholar