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Age Moderates the Relationship between Social Support and Psychosocial Problems
Unformatted Document Text:  Age Moderates 25 longing for that which has yet to be obtained in young people, and an appreciation of that which has been enjoyed among the elderly. In other words, the experiential basis of this attitude may differ by age, and the possible fulfillment (past or present) of the standard among older adults may be what minimizes its relationship with loneliness (Dykstra, 1995). Conclusion Based on the propositions of socioemotional selectivity theory and the theory of evolutionary psychology, age was predicted to moderate the relationship between social support and psychosocial problems. The results from this study are general consistent with the assumptions of socioemotional selectivity theory, but were not consistent with predictions derived from the theory of evolutionary psychology. In a number of cases, age did not significantly moderate the relationship between social support and psychosocial problems. Where age did emerge as a moderator, it was consistently the younger adults for whom social support and contact, from an array of sources, was most strongly related to their psychological health. At a general level this is consistent with the hypothesis derived from socioemotional selectivity theory that older adults become more selective toward key relationships and dismissive a more superficial relationships. However, even when considering social support from a partner/spouse, it was the younger participants who showed the strongest relationship with psychological health. There are several notable features of the age moderation effects documented in these results. First, all had the exact same pattern: the association between social support or contact and psychosocial well-being was always strongest for the younger adults. Second, field studies such as this one are notoriously underpowered for the detection of moderators and interactions (McClelland & Judd, 1993). This is because of greater error variance in

Authors: Segrin, Chris.
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Age Moderates
25
longing for that which has yet to be obtained in young people, and an appreciation of that
which has been enjoyed among the elderly. In other words, the experiential basis of this
attitude may differ by age, and the possible fulfillment (past or present) of the standard
among older adults may be what minimizes its relationship with loneliness (Dykstra, 1995).
Conclusion
Based on the propositions of socioemotional selectivity theory and the theory of
evolutionary psychology, age was predicted to moderate the relationship between social
support and psychosocial problems. The results from this study are general consistent with
the assumptions of socioemotional selectivity theory, but were not consistent with
predictions derived from the theory of evolutionary psychology. In a number of cases, age
did not significantly moderate the relationship between social support and psychosocial
problems. Where age did emerge as a moderator, it was consistently the younger adults for
whom social support and contact, from an array of sources, was most strongly related to
their psychological health. At a general level this is consistent with the hypothesis derived
from socioemotional selectivity theory that older adults become more selective toward key
relationships and dismissive a more superficial relationships. However, even when
considering social support from a partner/spouse, it was the younger participants who
showed the strongest relationship with psychological health.
There are several notable features of the age moderation effects documented in these
results. First, all had the exact same pattern: the association between social support or
contact and psychosocial well-being was always strongest for the younger adults. Second,
field studies such as this one are notoriously underpowered for the detection of moderators
and interactions (McClelland & Judd, 1993). This is because of greater error variance in


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