Health and Well-Being of Spouse Caregivers and the Widowed Academic Article uri icon


  • The appropriateness of the stress-coping and life transitions models for late life experiences was assessed by examining psychosocial correlates of spouse caregiving in association with widowhood. Data were from the Health Status of Older People (HSOP) survey of 1,000 people aged 65 and over living in the community in Melbourne, Australia. Caregiving was found to be a usual precursor to widowhood and may have prepared older people for widowhood. However, these two life experiences had different consequences. While widowhood appears to be the more severe transition, caring for a spouse often seriously threatens the meaningfulness of life.

publication date

  • October 1, 1997