Perceptions of Intergenerational Bonds: The Comparison Between Grandfathers and their Adult Grandchildren
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The study was guided by two theoretical frameworks: a phenomenological perspective and symbolic interactionism. In addition, ideas, from attachment and social support, also contributed to the formation of the study. Finally, conceptual ideas from a preliminary model of intergenerational bonding were involved in the development and implementation of this study. The study was conducted utilizing a qualitative method of inquiry. Data were collected through qualitative in-depth interviews, and the schedules were developed by the researcher.
First, both grandfathers and their adult grandchildren reported similar perceptions concerning areas such as the emotional closeness they experienced within the intergenerational relationship, the importance of knowing one's ancestors, and the grandfather's influence on the grandchildren's values and beliefs. Not all perceptions were found to be similar among the intergenerational groups however.
Second, grandfathers and their adult grandchildren reported being highly involved in intergenerational activities. The most frequently mentioned type of activity reported was recreational/outdoor activities. Gender differences were found and discussed regarding the activities mentioned by grandsons and granddaughters.
Third, four themes emerged from these data, three of which seemed to promote intergenerational closeness. They included: engaging in frequent contact, serving one another, and being a part of a conversational family. The fourth theme regarded the strong application of LDS religious principles within these grandfather-adult grandchild relationships. Implications and future research directions are also discussed.
- Doctoral Dissertations