Network Affiliations and Psychological Well-Being: Comparison between Men and Women in the United States

Libin Zhang, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

In recent years, there has been a growing interest in the relation of social network dynamics to mental health. This paper examines gender differences over the life span in the relationship between network affiliations and psychological well-being from a recent national survey in the U.S. The results prove that network size is positively related with men’s psychological well-being, while network density is positively related with women’s psychological well-being. Social inequality predictors such as income, education, full time or part time employment status and education are also significant in affecting the psychological well-being for both genders, but the concrete paths vary. An age effect exists, but life-span effects are more important.

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Presented in Session 189: Gender Stratification and Health