Published Papers - Abstract 1034

Hofer MK, Collins HK, Mishra GD & Schaller M. Do post-menopausal women provide more care to their kin?: evidence of grandparental caregiving from two large-scale national surveys. Evolution and Human Behavior, 2019; 40: 355-364

Drawing on the logical principles of life-history theory, it may be hypothesized that—compared to pre-menopausal women—post-menopausal women will spend more time caring for grandchildren and other kin. This hypothesis was tested in two studies, on results obtained from two large datasets documenting altruistic behaviors of pre-menopausal and post-menopausal women in the United States (N?=?7, 161) and Australia (N?=?25, 066). Results from both studies revealed that (even when controlling statistically for age, health, financial resources, and other pertinent variables), post-menopausal women devoted more time to grandparental caregiving. This effect was specific to kin care: Menopause status was not as strongly related to a measure of non-kin-directed altruistic behavior (time spent volunteering). These results provide the first empirical support for a previously-untested behavioral implication of menopause.

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