Parent – Child Caregiving Relationships

By Pamela D Wilson CSA, CG, MS, BS/BA

How does the quality of relationships and career success impact the way parents feel about their children? How might support between grown children and parents predict the quality of future caregiving relationships?  Is there a link between the perception of success and day to day relationships between parents and adult children?

Research (Cichy, Lefkowitz, Davis & Fingerman, 2013) shows a significant link between the quality of parent – child relationships and perceptions of the success of children. “Parents report strained relationships with children who have failed to achieve adult statuses.”

Day to day relationships are supported by the idea of reciprocity. The term “conflicted support” relates to the idea of support provided to an adult child or to an adult parent when a sense of repayment, change in personal habits or lack of appreciation occurs. Conflicted support is common in many parent-child relationships and often results in negative feelings.

How then — considering these complicated relationships factors — might adult children and parents work though these issues that will ultimately affect caregiving relationships — or is this asking the impossible?

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©2014 Pamela D. Wilson, All Rights Reserved.

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