Journal Article

Sense of Coherence: A Relevant Resource in the Coping Process of Mothers of Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Children?

Manfred Hintermair

in The Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education

Volume 9, issue 1, pages 15-26
Published in print January 2004 | ISSN: 1081-4159
Published online January 2004 | e-ISSN: 1465-7325 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/deafed/enh005
Sense of Coherence: A Relevant Resource in the Coping Process of Mothers of Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Children?

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This study examined the importance of reported sense of coherence (Antonovsky, 1987) in mothers of children with hearing impairment. Sense of coherence was explored as a factor in relation to the experience of stress and subjective life satisfaction and in the context of other relevant variables in coping (e.g., social support, additional handicaps of the child, child's hearing status, means of communication). Two hundred thirty-five mothers completed a questionnaire, and path analysis corroborated a theoretical model in which sense of coherence was delineated as a factor contributing directly to stress perception. Both sense of coherence and the experience of social support were identified as resources that reduced reported stress and improved quality of life, with sense of coherence especially important in reducing stress. Child variables, including additional handicaps and extent of hearing impairment, intensified reported stress for the mothers, but mode of communication with the deaf child did not affect stress experience. The findings are discussed within the context of socialization theory. Recommendations for further research (e.g., longitudinal data, control designs, socio-economic status, applicability to fathers) are made.

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Subjects: Education ; Linguistics ; Teaching of Specific Groups and Special Educational Needs

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