Coping strategies of Italian and Portuguese mothers in response to a child’s chronic or oncological disease: a cross-cultural study

Risultato della ricerca: Other contribution


Background:A child’s chronic or oncological disease is a stressful condition for parents, that may affect the adaptive management helpful for warranting the child’s wellbeing to a disease. Particularly, this study focuses on the possible connections between the variable “culture” and parental strategies to cope with child’s severe disease, by a comparison between Italian and Portuguese mothers.Design and Methods: This research inquires differences and cross-cultural elements among the coping strategies used by Italian and Portuguese mothers of child with chronic or oncological disease. Participants are two mothers’ groups: 59 Italian mothers (M=37,7; SD=4,5) and 36 Portuguese mothers (M=39,3; SD=4,6). The tool used was the Italian version and the Portuguese version of the COPE inventory, that measures five coping strategies: social support, avoidance coping, positive aptitude, religious and humor, active coping.Results: There were statistically significant differences between Portuguese and Italian mothers on Social support F(3, 94)=6.32, p=.014, η2=.065, on Religious and humor F(3, 94)=20.06, p=.001, η2=.18 (higher values=Portuguese mothers) and on Avoidance F(3, 94)=3.30, p=.06, η2=.035 (higher values=Italian mothers). Regarding to child disease, the only statistically significant difference was on Religious & humor F(3, 94)=7.49, p=.007, η2=.076 (higher values=mothers of children with chronic disease).Conclusions: The findings of specific cultural transversalities suggest important reflections about the relationship between physicians and parents; in fact, mothers’ coping abilities may allow health workers involved in a child’s care not only to understand how parents face a distressful event, but to provide them a professional support.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2013


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