Linea Life’s social contribution foundation, the Linea Prime Foundation, has released the ‘Peaceful Well-Aging Report’ with the theme of the middle-aged and older generations participating in society after retirement.
This study, together with Ewha Womans University’s Age-Integrated Aging Society Research Institute, conducted an in-depth survey on their perceptions of social participation by classifying them by educational background, income level, and personality type targeting 1,068 men and women between the ages of 55 and 74 living in Seoul. Unlike previous studies that viewed only leisure and social activities as activities after retirement, this study is different in that it studied the social participation of middle-aged adults, including work-related economic activities.
The 50+ in modern society had a strong perception that retirement is not a supporting role, but rather ‘life starts now’. Overall, they said that they view retirement as a new beginning or prefer to maintain their pre-retirement life. However, those over the age of 65 or with a low level of education tended to view retirement as a negative emotion such as confusion, embarrassment, fear, and helplessness, and they also thought that new challenges were difficult.
The change in the perception of the family is particularly notable. Active seniors who want to find their own life after retirement were found to want to get out of their caregiving duties. Currently, only 5-6% of the respondents are taking care of their grandchildren or elderly parents, and the majority answered that they have no plans to take care of them in the future. Rather, it was the children who held the ankles of reality. Currently, 14.5% of children are taking care of their children, which is higher than that of grandchildren or elderly parents. It shows the reality that an increasing number of children are living with their parents rather than being independent due to delayed marriage and employment.
When asked about economic and social participation activities, a majority (55.4%) of respondents answered that they would like to engage in economic and social participation activities together in the future. Men’s desire to engage in economic activity and social participation together was higher than that of women, and the younger group and the non-retired group answered that they would do both activities together.
All the activities that middle-aged people are currently engaged in are leisure activities, and rest accounted for the largest proportion (82.1%), followed by social gatherings/reunions (72.7%) and travel (52.7%). However, as for ‘activities you want to do’, ‘health care/exercise education’ (40.9%) was the first choice. It is analyzed that while people have a great desire to learn and protect their own health, they are not doing enough activities for this. Although the desired activities were slightly different depending on the level of education, income, gender, and whether or not to retire, ‘health care/exercise education’ was also the field that all young adults commonly wish to participate in.
Most of them felt that community activities were necessary for social participation after retirement. The types of community they would like to participate in were mostly leisure-related in the order of healthy community (71.3%), social community (66.7%), and travel community (65.5%).
Park Mi-soon, secretary general of the Reina Foundation, said, “Continued social participation is considered an important factor in improving the quality of life and completing meaningful retirement. If there is, it will be able to fill the old age of middle-aged people.”