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Early Parental Support, Relationships With God, and Self-Rated Health in Advanced Old Age

Publication Abstract

Krause, Neal. 2015. "Early Parental Support, Relationships With God, and Self-Rated Health in Advanced Old Age." Journal of Religion, Spirituality and Aging, 27(4): 305-322.

Object relations theory specifies that the nature of the relationship that individuals form with their primary caretaker serves as a prototype for the social relationships they develop in adulthood. Some investigators extend this perspective by arguing that social ties with caretakers also shape relationships with God. The purpose of this study is to empirically evaluate this extension. Data from a nationwide survey of older adults (N = 1,277) are used to evaluate a model that contains the following core relationships: (1) people who receive support from their primary caretakers will be more likely to attend worship services; (2) individuals who attend church frequently will be likely to develop a close relationship with God; (3) those who have a close relationship with God will be more hopeful about the future; and (4) people who are more hopeful will enjoy better health. The data provide support for each of these relationships.

DOI:10.1080/15528030.2015.1060920 (Full Text)

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