Thesis

Sibling status as a predictor of preparation for future caregiving

The family structure, particularly sibling status, may be an important factor in preparation for caregiving but has yet to be investigated in the literature. It was hypothesized that children without siblings would be better prepared for, and report more satisfaction with, preparation for caregiving than individuals with siblings. Female children without siblings were expected to report being more prepared for caregiving than all other participants; familism, affection, and personal willingness to provide care were expected to mediate these relationships. A random mail survey and a non-random snowball survey yielded a total of 128 individuals between the ages of 18 and 40; 60% of the participants reported having siblings, whereas 40 percent reported not having siblings. Results from multiple regression analyses revealed no significant relationships between sibling status and preparation for and satisfaction with preparation for caregiving. Two separate ANCOV A analyses revealed no significant main effect or interactions for sibling status and gender on preparation for, and satisfaction with, preparation for caregiving. Results are discussed in terms of the implications for future caregivers. Key words: caregiving, sibling status, familism, affection, willingness, preparation.

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