Date of Conferral







Magy Martin


The immigrant population in the U.S. is growing, and the way immigrants cope with the stress of parenting may differ from parents in their host country. There is a gap in the literature regarding knowledge about how Caribbean parents cope with parenting stress compared to U.S. parents. The purpose of this quasi-experimental quantitative study was to predict coping strategies used by Caribbean immigrant and U.S.-born parents of adolescents living in the U.S based on country of origin using transactional stress and coping theory as frameworks. Thirty-seven U.S.-born and 37 Caribbean-born caregivers living in the U.S. were recruited from social media platforms and completed anonymous online questionnaires including the Parental Stress Scale, the Ways of Coping Checklist-Revised, and a demographic survey. Multivariate linear regression was used to examine the extent to which parental stress and cultural origin as well as several covariates (educational level, racial ethnic background, and adolescent culture of origin), predicted eight different coping strategies (confrontive, distancing, self-controlling, seeking social support, accepting responsibility, escape avoidance, planful problem-solving, and positive appraisal). Cultural origin and the interaction of cultural origin and parental stress did not significantly predict the use of any coping strategies. Parental stress levels significantly predicted the use of escape avoidance in both groups. Educational level predicted confrontive coping, distancing, and seeking social support, while racial-ethnic background predicted distancing. These findings contribute to the literature and positive social change initiatives by increasing our understanding of coping processes in parenting and by helping health care providers treat Caribbean immigrant families.