Chapters of Our Lives: Life Narratives of Midlife and Older Australian Women

Chapters of Our Lives: Life Narratives of Midlife and Older Australian Women A narrative approach was used to explore whether women perceive their later years as a time of loss, stability, or gain, and the explanations they give for their perceptions. Life review interviews were held with 20 married or previously married mothers aged 60–65 living in lower-income suburbs of Sydney, Australia. Participants were asked to consider their life story as a book, to divide the book into chapters, and to entitle each chapter. Two types of gain narrative accounted for 70% of the stories: one (breakouts) described gains that resulted from the woman’s own actions, and the other (stress relief) described gains from role changes and the passage of time. A further 20% described continuing contentment with their lives, and 10% of the accounts described later life in terms of losses. The findings suggest that one reason for the later life satisfaction regularly found by surveys of older adults may be the disappearance or diminishment of previous life stressors. As part of a planned cohort comparison, similar interviews were held with women aged 50–55 and 40–45. An additional category of ongoing stress was required to accommodate their narratives. Sex Roles Springer Journals

Chapters of Our Lives: Life Narratives of Midlife and Older Australian Women

Loading next page...
Kluwer Academic Publishers-Plenum Publishers
Copyright © 2005 by Springer Science + Business Media, Inc.
Psychology; Gender Studies; Sociology, general; Medicine/Public Health, general
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site


You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.

DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 12 million articles from more than
10,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Unlimited reading

Read as many articles as you need. Full articles with original layout, charts and figures. Read online, from anywhere.

Stay up to date

Keep up with your field with Personalized Recommendations and Follow Journals to get automatic updates.

Organize your research

It’s easy to organize your research with our built-in tools.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

Monthly Plan

  • Read unlimited articles
  • Personalized recommendations
  • No expiration
  • Print 20 pages per month
  • 20% off on PDF purchases
  • Organize your research
  • Get updates on your journals and topic searches


Start Free Trial

14-day Free Trial

Best Deal — 39% off

Annual Plan

  • All the features of the Professional Plan, but for 39% off!
  • Billed annually
  • No expiration
  • For the normal price of 10 articles elsewhere, you get one full year of unlimited access to articles.



billed annually
Start Free Trial

14-day Free Trial