Intergenerational Proactive Coping with Increasing Eldercare Needs: Patterns, Processes and Challenges

Conference: The European Conference on Aging & Gerontology (EGen2022)
Title: Intergenerational Proactive Coping with Increasing Eldercare Needs: Patterns, Processes and Challenges
Stream: Resilience
Presentation Type: Oral Presentation
Xue Bai, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong
Chang Liu, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong


Global population ageing has increased eldercare needs which represents a stressor affecting ageing families and poses challenges to the wider society. Care planning before intensive care is a form of proactive coping that can prevent and mitigate the detrimental effects of potential stressors related to increasing care needs. Effective care planning requires families to engage in collaborative teamwork. However, few studies have examined future care planning in intergenerational or family contexts. This study adopted a "QUAN-Quali" research design and examined dyadic care planning styles in an intergenerational context by integrating a family systems perspective and the proactive coping theory. Based on the quantitative dyadic data pertaining to 213 pairs of older parents (aged >= 50 years) and their adult children, latent profile analysis yielded three care-planning profiles, namely filial-active intergenerational planners, dyadic thinkers, and filial-passive intergenerational avoiders. The characteristics of the participants in the three profile groups were identified, and a generational difference in intended care arrangements was discovered. Individual interviews with 60 older parent–adult children pairs were conducted, and integrative analysis was performed. The findings suggested that these three profiles exhibited child-centeredness, and the formation of the three patterns was influenced by the situation of both members of a dyad. Moreover, the dyadic proactive coping strategies are influenced by intergenerational relationship quality, and the frequency, direction, and history of support exchanges. The findings contributed to a more in-depth understanding of dyadic proactive coping styles regarding parents’ future care needs and highlighted the influence of cultural and family contexts.

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