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Gender differences in social network characteristics and psychological well-being among Hong Kong Chinese: the role of future time perspective and adherence to Renqing

Yeung, D.Y.; Fung, H.H.; Lang, F.R.

Aging and Mental Health 11(1): 45-56

2007


ISSN/ISBN: 1360-7863
PMID: 17164157
DOI: 10.1080/13607860600735820
Accession: 049140797

Gender differences in social network characteristics are well documented in the literature. Socio-emotional selectivity theory emphasizes the importance of future time perception on selection of social partners whereas cultural studies stress the roles of Renqing (relationship orientation) on social interactions. This study examined the effects of future time perspective and adherence to Renqing on social network characteristics, and their associations with psychological well-being of 321 Chinese men and women, aged 28-91 years. Results showed that adherence to Renqing partially accounted for gender differences in the number of relatives, even after controlling for the effects of extraversion and structural factors. Moreover, women, but not men, with lower adherence to Renqing and more limited future time perspective were found to be happier when they had fewer close friends in their social networks.

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