Objective: Parents of children with cancer must cope with multiple challenges over time. As most research on parental coping has been conducted in Western countries, little information is available on the parental experience of coping in non-Western countries. Using a new cultural sample of Korean mothers, this study describes their coping strategies. In addition, the association of particular coping patterns with mothers' report of psychosocial adjustment is investigated. Methods: A total of 200 Korean mothers of children with cancer participated in the study. Coping strategies were measured by the Coping Health Inventory for Parents in the following three categories: Maintaining Family Integration and an Optimistic Outlook for the Situation, Seeking Social Support, and Seeking Information. Maternal psychosocial adjustment was measured by psychological distress, family relationship, and social relationship subscales from the Psychosocial Adjustment to Illness Scale. Results: Korean mothers reported coping strategies related to Maintaining Family Integration and an Optimistic Outlook for the Situation as being most helpful. More frequent use of coping pattern, Maintaining Family Integration and an Optimistic Outlook for the Situation, and less frequent use of coping pattern, Information-Seeking were significantly associated with lower psychological distress and better family relationship after children's medical and maternal characteristics were controlled for. Coping pattern, Seeking Social Support was only predictive of social relationships. Conclusions: This study suggests that culture may play a significant role in the report of coping among Korean mothers. Future studies should consider culturally preferred coping methods and available resources as they relate to different adjustment outcomes.
- Chronic illness
- Psychosocial adjustment
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health