Master of Arts (MA)
Faculty of Science
Forty retired males participated in interviews concerning amounts and types of planning before retirement and for the future, self-concept age, and life satisfaction. Twenty males who were 65 to 69 years of age were designated the “Newcomers” and twenty who were 70 to 75 years of age were designated the “Veterans.”
It was hypothesized that, as the amount of planning increased (None to Low to Medium to High), life satisfaction (L-SAT) would also increase to a maximal level after which it would decrease. Also, an inverted curved relationship was hypothesized for self-concept age in that, as self-concept age decreased, L-SAT would increase to a maximal level after which it would decrease.
The results did not entirely support the hypotheses. It was found that “HI planners” had significantly lower L-SAT now, in the retirement years than “MED”, “LO” or “NO” planners combined. There were no significant differences in L-SAT between MED, LO, and NO planners. Thus, these three categories may actually be one category of planning (“Other”) as opposed to HI planning.
No significant relationship was found to exist between generality of planning before or after retirement and L-SAT now. Also, no significant relation was found between flexibility of planning before or after retirement and L-SAT now.
With respect to L-SAT scores, the subjects in this study had significantly higher L-SAT than that found by Neugarten et. al. (1961) when they developed the Life Satisfaction Index Scale B used in this study. When subjects were divided into HI and MED L-SAT groups, those in the HI group had significantly higher L-SAT than that of the Neugarten et. al. group whereas those in the MED L-SAT group did not differ significantly from the Neugarten et. al. group.
Health was found to be related to L-SAT for Newcomers only in that those in very good health fell more often in the HI L-SAT group than would be expected by chance.
Comparisons were made between those predicting death in 5 years (the P’s) and those not predicting death (the NP’s). It was found that significantly more P’s than would be expected by chance were widowers. It was also found that the mean L-SAT for P’s was significantly lower than for NP’s; more felt less satisfied now compared with when they were younger; more felt (surprisingly) that things are getting better; and more felt only fairly as opposed to very satisfied with life than would be expected by chance.
Qualitative data tended to support the liberation perspective of retirement.
Implications of the above results with respect to developing a primary preventive mental health model were noted.
Close, Mary Elizabeth, "Planning Ahead Before and During the Retirement Years: Its Relation to Life Satisfaction and Self-Concept Age for Retired Males" (1981). Theses and Dissertations (Comprehensive). 1371.