End-of-Life Co-residence of Older Parents and Their Sons in Rural China

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13 Scopus citations


This study examined how intergenerational exchanges with sons and daughters predicted older parents' likelihood of co-residing with a son prior to death in a rural area of China's Anhui Province. Our investigation drew on theories of contingent co-residence, modernization, and social exchange, conceptualizing co-residence as having practical and symbolic importance in rural Chinese culture. The sample included 470 older parents, reported as deceased during 2001-2009, and their posthumous informants. We used logistic regression to assess intergenerational support and cohesion as predictors of co-residence with a son just prior to death. Older parents who provided instrumental support to, and received instrumental support from, sons and had better emotional relationships with sons were more likely than their counterparts to co-reside with a son at the end of life. Living with sons demonstrates filial piety for older parents at the end of life, but its realization is sensitive to intergenerational transactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)331-341
Number of pages11
JournalCanadian Journal on Aging
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 6 2015


  • Chinese families
  • aging
  • aging families
  • co-residence
  • intergenerational support
  • living arrangements

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Gerontology
  • Community and Home Care
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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