The present investigation sought to advance extant relational maintenance research in the context of grandparent-grandchild (GP-GC) relationships from the perspective of grandchildren. Specifically, this study examined the extent to which American grandchildren’s use of relational maintenance behaviors with their grandparents is (a) dependent on grandchildren’s and grandparents’ biological sex, (b) dependent on family lineage (i.e., maternal versus paternal grandparents), and (c) associated with grandchildren’s perceived GP-GC relational characteristics (i.e., trust, commitment, and control mutuality). Young adult American grandchildren (N = 220) completed a series of established instruments in reference to their relationships with a specific grandparent. The results of three MANOVAs and a series of Pearson correlations indicated that grandchildren’s use of relational maintenance behaviors with their grandparents is not dependent on the grandchildren’s or the grandparents’ biological sex, nor is it dependent on family lineage. However, grandchildren’s tendencies to sustain their GP-GC relationships were closely associated with their perceived GP-GC relational characteristics. These findings both corroborate and contradict extant GP-GC and relational maintenance research.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science
- Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
- Geriatrics and Gerontology
- Life-span and Life-course Studies