Gender Differences In Filial Obligation

891 Words4 Pages
Gender differences in Felt Obligation and its relationship with personality correlates
Adulthood is often seen as a period of stability and independence in a person’s life. Many individuals aged over 30 have established a standing in their professional domain and have a family, sometimes including children, of their own. Adulthood also brings a new dimension into the parent-child relationship as parents’ increasing age and their dependency on their children may grow. This often leads to a shift in the dynamics of this relationship and children may feel more obligated towards their parents than ever before.
Multiple terms like filial responsibility, filial obligation, felt obligation, filial piety and filial reciprocity have been used to describe the sense of responsibility and obligation that emerges in children as their parents age and need caregiving. Stein (1992) describes felt obligation as “expectations regarding appropriate behaviour as perceived within the context of specific, personal relationships with kin across the life cycle”. This
…show more content…
For the purpose of this research, we will be looking at felt obligation which according to Stein (1992) is an amalgamation of five individual dimensions. The first of these dimensions is “maintaining appropriate contact”, the second “avoiding interpersonal conflict” the third “engaging in personal sharing”, the fourth “providing assistance” and the fifth one is “maintaining an appropriate level of self-sufficiency”. The main difference between felt obligation and filial responsibility is that the latter refers to the attitudes that adult children hold towards their responsibilities towards their aging parents (Cicirelli, 1990). Felt obligation on the other hand is a series of practical “negotiated commitments” that are applied in a family context across time as defined by Stein
Open Document