Women’s and men’s filial care: extent, content and consequences
This paper analyses the extent, content and consequences of caregiving for elderly parents from agender and welfare state perspective using a nationally representative postal survey conducted in Sweden in 2013 (response rate 60.5 per cent, 3630 individuals, age 45–66 years). Negative consequencesof filial care on well-being, work situation and employment were examined. The analysisconfirms earlier research showing that filial care is common in Sweden but is less intense and hasfewer negative consequences than in less generous welfare states. A quarter of both women andmen gave filial care at least once a month, on average around 3.4 hours a week.Although men and women gave the same extent of filial care, it was more common amongwomen to give the more demanding personal care as well as to experience mental and physicalstrain, difficulties in finding time for leisure activities and reduced ability to focus on their job. Although women retired earlier than planned due to filial care more often than men, this was very rare. Men and women, however, suffered to the same extent from difficulties in managing to accomplish their tasks, to take part in meetings, courses and travels, as well as having to reducetheir working hours and quit their jobs. The content of care was crucial for the occurrence of negative consequences of caregiving, evenwhen the analysis controlled for hours of care given. The more demanding the care tasks performed,the more common it was among both men and women that their well-being and worksituation were affected. The correlation between care tasks and negative impact, however, differedbetween genders. The impact of managerial care was much higher for women than for men,which is discussed in relation to the decline of eldercare services and the lack of coordination of health and eldercare services.
2015. Vol. 22, no 2, 111-132 p.