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Age Moderates the Relationship between Social Support and Psychosocial Problems
Unformatted Document Text:  Age Moderates 26 field as opposed to experimental settings, the compounding of measurement error associated with interaction terms that are the product of two variables measured with less than perfect reliability, and the limited magnitude of moderator effects in field settings (McClelland & Judd, 1993). These factors make the detection of the age by social support interactions in this study all the more remarkable, and although the magnitude of the moderating effects was modest, it is extremely unlikely that these estimates are overstating the moderational effect of age on the association between social support and psychological well-being. Finally, results of this study have implications for research on models of successful aging. The fact that social support and contact was weakly related, if at all, to depression and loneliness later in the life span, is consistent with models of volitional downsizing of social networks coupled with sustained happiness and well-being among the elderly (e.g., Carstensen, 1993; Lang, 2001). These findings suggest that many elderly people may have developed a perspective on self-sufficiency that their younger counterparts have yet to realize: How to remain happy and content regardless of the social support that is provided by other people.

Authors: Segrin, Chris.
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Age Moderates
26
field as opposed to experimental settings, the compounding of measurement error
associated with interaction terms that are the product of two variables measured with less
than perfect reliability, and the limited magnitude of moderator effects in field settings
(McClelland & Judd, 1993). These factors make the detection of the age by social support
interactions in this study all the more remarkable, and although the magnitude of the
moderating effects was modest, it is extremely unlikely that these estimates are overstating
the moderational effect of age on the association between social support and psychological
well-being.
Finally, results of this study have implications for research on models of successful
aging. The fact that social support and contact was weakly related, if at all, to depression
and loneliness later in the life span, is consistent with models of volitional downsizing of
social networks coupled with sustained happiness and well-being among the elderly (e.g.,
Carstensen, 1993; Lang, 2001). These findings suggest that many elderly people may have
developed a perspective on self-sufficiency that their younger counterparts have yet to
realize: How to remain happy and content regardless of the social support that is provided
by other people.


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