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Families in societyBoundaries and relationships$
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Linda McKie and Sarah Cunningham-Burley

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9781861346438

Published to University Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781861346438.001.0001

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date: 22 August 2017

Intersections of health and well-being in women’s lives and relationships at mid-life

Intersections of health and well-being in women’s lives and relationships at mid-life

Chapter:
(p.130) (p.131) Eight Intersections of health and well-being in women’s lives and relationships at mid-life
Source:
Families in society
Author(s):

Kathryn Backett-Milburn

Laura Airey

Linda McKie

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781861346438.003.0008

This chapter provides a gendered, lifecourse perspective on health, medicine and well-being. Well-being, it is argued, may be a useful concept through which to challenge conventional boundaries around ageing, health and illness. The chapter focuses on a study of women in their fifties and examines how the boundaries of caring and providing intersect with lifecourse stage, biographical history, and social and familial circumstances. Respondents in the study reported a sense of a freeing up of time for their own interests, challenging traditional boundaries and expectations around women's ageing. However, caring responsibilities across the generations invoke more traditionally gendered roles; ambiguity and ambivalence were present in the women's accounts of this time in their lives. Wider personal relationships were described as important sources of support and knowledge about the ageing process, signifying changing dynamics between family and friends.

Keywords:   ageing, illness, biographical history, women's ageing, caring

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