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Family Relationships and Depressive Symptoms Among Chinese Older Immigrants in the United States.
J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2017 Jul 01; 72(suppl_1):S113-S118.JG

Abstract

Background

Given the growth in the number of older Chinese immigrants in the United States and the importance of family support in Chinese culture, this study examines how supportive and negative relationships with family members (children and spouse) influence depressive symptom severity among this population.

Methods

Using data from the Population Study of Chinese Elderly in Chicago, we carried out multivariate negative binomial regression analysis using a sample of 3,159 Chinese older immigrants. Depressive symptom severity was measured using the Patient Health Questionnaire. Intergenerational and marital relationships were characterized using self-reported measures of two supportive features (confiding and aiding) and two negative features (demanding and criticizing).

Results

Confiding and aiding relationships with children (incident rate ratio [IRR] = .70, confidence interval [CI]: 0.57, 0.85; IRR = .70, CI: 0.56, 0.88, respectively) and spouses (IRR = .61, CI:0.47, 0.79; IRR = .66, CI: 0.52, 0.83, respectively) were significantly associated with lower depressive symptom severity among the older Chinese immigrants sampled. Demanding (IRR = 1.39, CI: 1.16, 1.68) and criticizing (IRR = 1.37, CI: 1.17, 1.60) intergenerational relationships significantly predicted higher depressive symptom severity, and spousal criticism (IRR = 1.41, CI: 1.24, 1.59) was related to higher depressive symptom severity. Aiding relationships with children appears to be more important for older women than men (IRR = .69, CI: 0.47, 1.01).

Conclusions

The findings reveal the importance of both positive and negative interactions with spouses and children in shaping mental well-being among older Chinese immigrants. Future geriatric practice and research should consider both supportive and negative features in examining and addressing interpersonal relationships and mental health.

Authors+Show Affiliations

School of Social Work, Columbia University, New York.Department of Internal Medicine, Rush Medical College, Chicago, Illinois.School of Social Work, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.Department of Applied Social Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, China.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

28575253

Citation

Liu, Jinyu, et al. "Family Relationships and Depressive Symptoms Among Chinese Older Immigrants in the United States." The Journals of Gerontology. Series A, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences, vol. 72, no. suppl_1, 2017, pp. S113-S118.
Liu J, Dong X, Nguyen D, et al. Family Relationships and Depressive Symptoms Among Chinese Older Immigrants in the United States. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2017;72(suppl_1):S113-S118.
Liu, J., Dong, X., Nguyen, D., & Lai, D. W. L. (2017). Family Relationships and Depressive Symptoms Among Chinese Older Immigrants in the United States. The Journals of Gerontology. Series A, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences, 72(suppl_1), S113-S118. https://doi.org/10.1093/gerona/glw138
Liu J, et al. Family Relationships and Depressive Symptoms Among Chinese Older Immigrants in the United States. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2017 Jul 1;72(suppl_1):S113-S118. PubMed PMID: 28575253.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Family Relationships and Depressive Symptoms Among Chinese Older Immigrants in the United States. AU - Liu,Jinyu, AU - Dong,XinQi, AU - Nguyen,Duy, AU - Lai,Daniel W L, PY - 2016/01/20/received PY - 2016/07/06/accepted PY - 2017/6/3/entrez PY - 2017/6/3/pubmed PY - 2017/8/22/medline KW - Conflict KW - Intergenerational relationship KW - Marital relationship KW - Older adult KW - Support SP - S113 EP - S118 JF - The journals of gerontology. Series A, Biological sciences and medical sciences JO - J. Gerontol. A Biol. Sci. Med. Sci. VL - 72 IS - suppl_1 N2 - Background: Given the growth in the number of older Chinese immigrants in the United States and the importance of family support in Chinese culture, this study examines how supportive and negative relationships with family members (children and spouse) influence depressive symptom severity among this population. Methods: Using data from the Population Study of Chinese Elderly in Chicago, we carried out multivariate negative binomial regression analysis using a sample of 3,159 Chinese older immigrants. Depressive symptom severity was measured using the Patient Health Questionnaire. Intergenerational and marital relationships were characterized using self-reported measures of two supportive features (confiding and aiding) and two negative features (demanding and criticizing). Results: Confiding and aiding relationships with children (incident rate ratio [IRR] = .70, confidence interval [CI]: 0.57, 0.85; IRR = .70, CI: 0.56, 0.88, respectively) and spouses (IRR = .61, CI:0.47, 0.79; IRR = .66, CI: 0.52, 0.83, respectively) were significantly associated with lower depressive symptom severity among the older Chinese immigrants sampled. Demanding (IRR = 1.39, CI: 1.16, 1.68) and criticizing (IRR = 1.37, CI: 1.17, 1.60) intergenerational relationships significantly predicted higher depressive symptom severity, and spousal criticism (IRR = 1.41, CI: 1.24, 1.59) was related to higher depressive symptom severity. Aiding relationships with children appears to be more important for older women than men (IRR = .69, CI: 0.47, 1.01). Conclusions: The findings reveal the importance of both positive and negative interactions with spouses and children in shaping mental well-being among older Chinese immigrants. Future geriatric practice and research should consider both supportive and negative features in examining and addressing interpersonal relationships and mental health. SN - 1758-535X UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/28575253/Family_Relationships_and_Depressive_Symptoms_Among_Chinese_Older_Immigrants_in_the_United_States_ L2 - https://academic.oup.com/biomedgerontology/article-lookup/doi/10.1093/gerona/glw138 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -