ERIC Number: ED313634
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989-Nov
Caregivers' Cognitive Coping Strategies: "These Are Things I'm Talkin' to Me About."
Transactional theories of stress suggest that redefining or reframing difficult circumstances may be a useful coping strategy for family caregivers. To identify specific cognitive reappraisal themes and strategies caregivers use, this study examined published accounts of caregivers' (N=26) experiences, which represent an unobtrusive, untapped data source. Statements that reframed or redefined the caregiving situation were recorded and sorted into categories. Five major reframing themes emerged: (1) taking the care-recipient's perspective; (2) finding satisfaction or meaning; (3) identifying accomplishments; (4) discovering personal benefits; and (5) accepting one's own limitations. This study was limited by the sample of caregivers who chose to tell their stories and the researcher's choices of categories. Increasing the understanding of caregivers' use of cognitive coping strategies can be a foundation for further research that would explore the effectiveness of various techniques in helping caregivers manage their difficult situations. Such research, focusing on strategies that families develop out of their own search for ways to survive, and possibly even grow, from difficult situations, can result in improved, more effective psychoeducational interventions to help family caregivers. (Author/ABL)
Descriptors: Adjustment (to Environment), Coping, Family Caregivers, Older Adults, Stress Management
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America (42nd, Minneapolis, MN, November 17-21, 1989).