Chumbler, N.R., Amy M. Pienta, and J.W. Dwyer. 2004. "The Depressive Symptomatology of Parent Care Among the Near Elderly - the Influence of Multiple Role Commitments." Research on Aging, 26(3): 330-351.
This article investigates the independent additive and the interactive effects of being an informal caregiver of an elderly parent and three role commitments (being married, having a child or grandchild coreside, and being employed) on depressive symptomatology. For the respondents with a living mother, being a caregiver to their mother was not associated with the level of depressive symptoms. For the respondents with a living father, being a caregiver to their father was associated with higher levels of depressive symptoms. Respondents who were caregivers to their father reported lower depressive symptom scores due to being married and due to being employed. Being married and being employed may provide an alternative source of integration and thus buffer the detrimental effects that caregiving for a father has on depressive symptomatology. The findings are discussed in the context of role strain and role enhancement perspectives.