Parental Financial Assistance and Young Adults' Relationships With Parents and Well-being


Department of Sociology, Washington State University, P.O. Box 644020, Pullman, WA 99164–4020 (


Drawing on data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, this study examined the impact of parental financial assistance on young adults' relationships with parents and well-being. Conditional change models were estimated to evaluate the effects of parental financial assistance reported in Wave 3 (ages 18–28) and Wave 4 (ages 24–34) of the study. The results (Ns ranged from 9,128 to 13,389 across outcomes) indicated that financial assistance was positively associated with changes in depressive symptoms and closeness to both mothers and fathers in both periods. Changes in self-esteem were less robustly linked to parental financial assistance. Although the observed pattern with respect to parent–child relations held regardless of the progress young people had made in the transition to adulthood, the effects for well-being, which were also relatively small in magnitude, did not. In particular, changes in depressive symptoms associated with financial assistance were concentrated among individuals occupying adult social roles.