Perception of the obligation to support older parents


This study* was made by MICARE’s María Beatriz Fernández (associate) y María Soledad Herrera (adjunct). Both are professors at the Sociology Institute of Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.

The main objective was to know the perception of the norm of filial obligation that adult children have in Santiago de Chile. The purpose was to describe how they personally perceive the obligation to support their elderly parents.

The study shows how adult children agree with the norm of filial obligation, which is justified by the duty to repay for what parents have done for them throughout life, as well as by the existence of interrelationships perceived as positive.

Likewise, gender differences are observed, because although both sons and daughters reported feeling a commitment to their parents, in men this commitment is weaker, which reinforces the feminization of the filial obligation.

* This work was funded by the National Research and Development Agency (ANID) through the Fondecyt Inicio contest No. 11180287 and the Millennium Scientific Initiative Program ICS2019_024.

Foto de una mujer adulta abrazando a su madre mayor.