Self and Perceived Others’ Views of Aging and Their Association with Mental Health in the Second Half of Life

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Abstract

This study focuses on the concepts of subjective age and subjective nearness-to-death (views-of-aging) and examines the association between individuals’ chronological age, self, and others’ perceptions of these variables and mental health. A total of 267 participants aged 40–95 M = 64.33 provided sociodemographic information and filled out scales assessing self and others’ views-of-aging, depressive symptoms, and their well-being. After controlling for covariates, age was not related to the dependent variables, whereas young/far from death self, and perceived others’ views-of-aging was related to better mental health. The interaction between young age and young/far from death perceived others’, but not self, views-of-aging was associated with lower depressive symptoms and higher well-being. Finally, the interaction between young/far from death self and perceived others’ views-of-aging was associated with lower depressive symptoms but not with well-being. These findings provide an initial glance at the complex relations between two types of personal views-of-aging and emphasize the importance of how individuals appraise others’ perceptions of their own aging process and life expectancy.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)479-495
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Aging and Human Development
Volume97
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2023

Keywords

  • depression
  • self and perceived others’ views-of-aging
  • subjective age
  • subjective nearness to death
  • well-being

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Ageing

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