The Age, Gender and Residence Differentials in the Relationship of Intergenerational Relations and Chinese Elderly’s Subjective Well-Being

Li Zhang

This research focuses on studying the gender, residence and age differentials in the relationship of intergenerational relations and elderly Chinese’s subjective well-being. Through analyzing data from the 2011 wave of Chinese Longitudinal Healthy Longevity Survey (CLHLS), the results show that most forms of intergenerational support promote the Chinese elderly’s positive feelings and decrease their negative feelings. However, significant age, gender and residence differentials are shown when intergenerational relations affecting elderly’s subjective well-being. Specifically, Chinese elderly’s psychological well-being is negatively associated with age. The gender differences are mainly observed when financial support/exchange affects elderly’s subjective well-being. Receiving financial support from adult children is found to damage male seniors’ subjective well-being but improve female elderly’s subjective well-being. As to rural-urban differentials, the financial forms of intergenerational support/exchange have a more significant impact on improving urban seniors’ psychological well-being; whereas the non-financial forms of intergenerational support from adult children have significantly positive effects on promoting rural elderly’s subjective well-being. In general, the effects of intergenerational relations on the elderly’s subjective well-being are found to be more similar for males, urban and younger (74 or under) elderly. The research highlights that the elderly who are rural, females and aged 75 and over are more disadvantaged groups. They should receive more attention from policy makers and gerontology researchers who aim to promote healthy aging.