Retirement transitions, gender, and psychological well-being: A life-course, ecological model

Jungmeen E. Kim, Phyllis Moen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

355 Scopus citations


This longitudinal study investigated the relationship between retirement transitions and subsequent psychological well-being using data on 458 married men and women (aged 50-72 years) who were either still in their primary career jobs, retired, or had just made the transition to retirement over the preceding 2 years. The findings show that the relationship between retirement and psychological well-being must be viewed in a temporal, life course context. Specifically, making the transition to retirement within the last 2 years is associated with higher levels of morale for men, whereas being "continuously" retired is related to greater depressive symptoms among men. The results suggest the importance of examining various resources and contexts surrounding retirement transitions (gender, prior level of psychological well-being, spouses' circumstance, and changes in personal control, marital quality, subjective health, and income adequacy) to understand the dynamics of the retirement transition and its relationship with psychological well-being.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)P212-P222
JournalJournals of Gerontology - Series B Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002


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