African-American women of reproductive age, particularly those living in the southern United States, represent a disproportionate number of women with HIV/AIDS. Often women who become infected with HIV in the South must cope not only with the disease, but with economic stresses and racial stigma, as well. Faced with these changes, these women experience increased distress and loss of hope. The purpose of this study was to examine levels of hope in a group of HIV-infected African-American women and to identify coping strategies that were associated with women maintaining a sense of hope for the future. A descriptive design was used to test the relationships between hope and coping strategies used by HIV-infected African-American women. Reported levels of hope were significantly lower for study participants than for women with breast cancer or for hospitalized adults with cancer who were receiving chemotherapy. Statistically significant positive relationships were observed between hope and the total coping score (r = .37, p = .009) hope and managing the illness (r = .47, p = .001) and between hope and spiritual activities (r = .40, p = .004). A statistically significant negative relationship was observed between hope and avoidance coping (r = -.35, p = .009).
- coping strategies,
- mental health,
- nursing research
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/kenneth_phillips/50/