The substantial number of childless elderly in Canada and the United States raises important concerns about the nature of their family support, as well as their psychological well-being. Although the (mixed) effects of childlessness on the mental health of the elderly are well documented in the literature, little is known about the social distribution of psychological distress and depression within this population: how well the childless elderly live, the status of their mental health, and what factors affect their psychological well-being are all crucial questions that remain unanswered. This paper utilizes Pearlin et al.’s (1981) stress process model to examine psychological distress and depression among the childless elderly. Our empirical analysis uses a nationally representative sample of childless individuals aged 55 and over (N= 2,311) from the 1996-1997 National Population Health Survey (NPHS), and generalized linear model (GLM) techniques. Generally, our results support the stress process model. We find that individual-level stressors exert a strong and consistently negative impact on psychological distress and depression. We also find significant buffering effects of (perceived) social support.