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Longitudinal study of social support and meaning in life

Publication Abstract

Krause, Neal. 2007. "Longitudinal study of social support and meaning in life." Psychology and Aging, 22(3): 456-469.

The purpose of this study was to see whether 3 types of social support (enacted support, negative interaction, and anticipated support) are associated with change in meaning in life. Data from a nationwide longitudinal survey of older people suggested that greater anticipated support (i.e., the belief that others will provide assistance in the future if needed) is associated with a deeper sense of meaning over time. The same was true with respect to emotional support received from family members and close friends. In contrast, the findings revealed that, at least initially, negative interaction lowers an older person's sense of meaning in life.

DOI:10.1037/0882-7974.22.3.456 (Full Text)

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