The Demography of Unions Among Older Americans, 1980–Present: A Family Change Approach
The current generation of older Americans faces more complex family and marital histories than any prior generation. Moreover, baby boomers, the first cohort to experience high levels of divorce, single parenthood, and remarriage, are now moving into older adulthood. This movement will likely exacerbate the trend away from marriage among older adults. Researchers are uncovering greater heterogeneity and complexity in the family life of older Americans, which in turn portends a shift in the benefits and rewards offered by certain family circumstances (Allen et al. 2000; Cooney and Dunne 2001). The growing diversity of living arrangements characterizing older adulthood is likely to have important consequences for individual health and well-being as well as policy ramifications for the changing types of institutional support older adults require (Wilmoth and Longino 2006).
KeywordsDepression Europe Income Posit
- Administration on Aging 2009. Aging Statistics. Retrieved July 30, 2010 (http://www.aoa.gov/AoARoot/Aging_Statistics/index.aspx).
- Axinn, William and Arland Thornton. 2000. “The Transformation in the Meaning of Marriage.” Pp. 147–65 in The Ties that Bind: Perspectives on Marriage and Cohabitation, edited by L. Waite, C. Bachrach, M. Hindin, E. Thomson and A. Thornton. New York: Walter de Gruyter, Inc.Google Scholar
- Bennett, Lisa and Gary J. Gates 2004. “The Cost of Marriage Inequality to Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Seniors.” Washington, D.C.: Human Rights Campaign.Google Scholar
- Bianchi, Suzanne M., V. Joseph Hotz, Kathleen McGarry, and Judith A. Seltzer 2008. Intergenerational Ties: Alternative Theories, Empirical Findings and Trends, and Remaining Challenges. Pp. xx–xx in Intergenerational Caregiving, edited by A. Booth, N. Crouter, S. Bianchi, and J. Seltzer. Washington DC: Urban Institute Press.Google Scholar
- Brown, Susan L. and Sayaka Kawamura. Forthcoming. “Relationship Quality among Cohabitors and Marrieds in Older Adulthood.” Social Science Research 39:777–86.Google Scholar
- Calasanti, Toni and K. Jill Kiecolt. 2007. “Diversity among Late-Life Couples.” Generations, 31, 10–17.Google Scholar
- De Jong Gierveld, Jenny. 2004. “Remarriage, Unmarried Cohabitation, Living Apart Together: Partner Relationships Following Bereavement or Divorce.” Journal of Marriage and Family 66:236–43.Google Scholar
- Elder, Glen H., Jr. 1985. “Perspectives on the Life Course.” Pp. 23–49 in Life Course Dynamics: Trajectories and Transitions, 1968–1980, edited by G. H. Elder, Jr. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
- Gates, Gary. 2003. “Gay and Lesbian Families in the Census: Gay and Lesbian Seniors.” Washington, D.C.: Urban Institute.Google Scholar
- Heron, Melanie P., Donna Hoyert, Sherry Murphy, Jiaquan Xu, Kenneth Kochanek, and Betzaida Tejada-Vera. 2009. Deaths: Final Data for 2006. National Vital Statistics Reports, 57(14). Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics.Google Scholar
- Huyck, Margaret Hellie. 1995. “Marriage and Close Relationships of the Marital Kind.” Pp. 181–200 in Handbook of Aging and the Family, edited by R. Blieszner and V. H. Bedford. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.Google Scholar
- Lin, I-Fen. 2010. “Gender, Divorce, and Expectations of Support from Adult Children.” Center for Family and Demographic Research Working Paper 2010–04. Bowling Green State University Bowling Green, Ohio.Google Scholar
- Meyers, George C. and Barbara Foley Wilson. 1988. “Marriage and Divorce Trends and Patterns among Older Americans.” Presented at the annual Meeting of the Population Association of America, New Orleans, LA, April.Google Scholar
- Mutchler, Jan E. 1992. “Living Arrangements and Household Transitions among the Unmarried in Later Life.” Social Science Quarterly 73:565–80.Google Scholar
- National Center for Family and Marriage Research. 2009. “Marital Status in the U.S., 2008.” Family Profile 09-04.v. Retrieved (http://ncfmr.bgsu.edu/family_percent20marriage_lit/Familypercent20Profiles/family_profiles.html).
- National Center for Health Statistics. 2009. Health, United States, 2008 with Chartbook Hyattsville, MD.Google Scholar
- Rossi, Alice S. and Peter H. Rossi. 1990. Of Human Bonding: Parent-Child Relations across the Life Course. New York: Walter de Gruyter, Inc.Google Scholar
- Seltzer, Judith, Christine Bachrach, Suzanne M. Bianchi, Caroline H. Bledsoe, Lynne M. Casper, P. Lindsay Chase-Lansdale, Thomas A. DiPrete, V. Joseph Hotz, S. Philip Morgan, Seth G. Sanders and Duncan Thomas. 2005. “Explaining Family Change and Variation: Challenges for Family Demographers.” Journal of Marriage and Family 67:4:908–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Settersten, Richard A., Jr. 2009. “It Takes Two to Tango: The (Un)Easy Dance between Life-Course Sociology and Life-Span Psychology.” Advances in Life Course Research 14(1–2):74–81.Google Scholar
- Tamborini, Christopher R. 2007. “The Never-Married in Old Age: Projections and Concerns for the Near Future.” Social Security Bulletin 67(2):25–40.Google Scholar
- U.S. Bureau of the Census. 2009. “Same-Sex Couples, Data from the American Community Survey: 2008.” Retrieved July 30, 2010 (http://www.census.gov/population/www/socdemo/hh-fam.html).
- Wade, A. 1989. Social Security Area Population Projections. Actuarial Study No. 105, Washington, D.C.: Office of the Actuary, Social Security Administration.Google Scholar
- Waite, Linda. 2009. Marriage & Health, Especially at Older Ages. Families and Health Conference. Washington, D.C., June. Retrieved July 30, 2010 (http://ncfmr.bgsu.edu/pdf/families_health/file78452.pdf).
- Waite, Linda J., Christine Bachrach, Michelle Hindin, Elizabeth Thomson, and Arland Thornton. 2000. The Ties that Bind: Perspectives on Marriage and Cohabitation. New York: Walter de Gruyter, Inc.Google Scholar
- Wilmoth, Janet M. and Charles F. Longino, Jr. 2006. “Demographic Trends That Will Shape U.S. Policy in the Twenty-First Century.” Research on Aging 28:269–88.Google Scholar