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Age Moderates the Relationship between Social Support and Psychosocial Problems
Unformatted Document Text:  Age Moderates 16 between family social support and loneliness, it is apparent that age moderates the relationship between family social support and depression, = .13, p < .05. This interaction term was decomposed and illustrated by re-running the regression analysis with the age variable at -1 standard deviation from its centered mean, at the centered mean, and at +1 standard deviation from the centered mean, as recommended by Aiken and West (1991) and Cohen and Cohen (1983). The standardized regression coefficient for family social support in each analysis illustrates the relationship between family social support and depression at “older,” “middle aged,” and “younger” points in the life span. The associated coefficients were = .-.15, p <.05, at older age, = -.29, p < .001, at middle age, and = - .39, p < .001, at younger age. These regression slopes are plotted in Figure 1. As can be seen in Figure 1, all participants appeared to benefit from perceived family social support, in terms of reduced symptoms of depression. However, this relationship was most powerful at a younger age in the life span, and least powerful at older age. The next pair of regression analyses was identical to the first, except in this case, perceived social support from friends was treated as a predictor variable, along with age, and the age x friend social support interaction. Results of these analyses appear in Table 2. As with family social support, perceived social support from friends was negatively associated with both depression, = -.33, p < .001, and loneliness, = -.25, p < .001. However, there was no evidence to indicate that age moderated the relationship between perceived social support from friends and either psychosocial problem. All participants appeared to benefit equally from friend social support, regardless of their age. Approximately 80% of the participants in this study were either married or had a “serious romantic partner.” Tests of the same moderation hypothesis were carried out for

Authors: Segrin, Chris.
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Age Moderates
16
between family social support and loneliness, it is apparent that age moderates the
relationship between family social support and depression, = .13, p < .05. This
interaction term was decomposed and illustrated by re-running the regression analysis with
the age variable at -1 standard deviation from its centered mean, at the centered mean, and
at +1 standard deviation from the centered mean, as recommended by Aiken and West
(1991) and Cohen and Cohen (1983). The standardized regression coefficient for family
social support in each analysis illustrates the relationship between family social support and
depression at “older,” “middle aged,” and “younger” points in the life span. The associated
coefficients were = .-.15, p <.05, at older age, = -.29, p < .001, at middle age, and = -
.39, p < .001, at younger age. These regression slopes are plotted in Figure 1. As can be
seen in Figure 1, all participants appeared to benefit from perceived family social support,
in terms of reduced symptoms of depression. However, this relationship was most
powerful at a younger age in the life span, and least powerful at older age.
The next pair of regression analyses was identical to the first, except in this case,
perceived social support from friends was treated as a predictor variable, along with age,
and the age x friend social support interaction. Results of these analyses appear in Table 2.
As with family social support, perceived social support from friends was negatively
associated with both depression, = -.33, p < .001, and loneliness, = -.25, p < .001.
However, there was no evidence to indicate that age moderated the relationship between
perceived social support from friends and either psychosocial problem. All participants
appeared to benefit equally from friend social support, regardless of their age.
Approximately 80% of the participants in this study were either married or had a
“serious romantic partner.” Tests of the same moderation hypothesis were carried out for


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