Perspectives on Religious and Spiritual Coping among Rural Grandparent Caregivers

Madeline Nicole Dunfee, Robyn Lewis Brown, Nancy E. Schoenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Poverty and poor health disproportionately affect older adults serving as primary caregivers to their grandchildren. In underserved, rural regions, where grandparent caregivers may be especially vulnerable, grandparent caregivers may find support in cultural traditions. As part of a mixed methods study investigating stress among grandparent caregivers, the role religion and spirituality play in coping was explored using a survey complemented by semi-structured interviews with 26 rural grandparent caregivers. Findings suggest religion and spirituality facilitate coping by (a) providing a sense of purpose and perspective; (b) fostering peace and perseverance; and (c) promoting stability and social cohesion. This study describes how cultural assets aid grandparent caregivers’ coping and may inform supportive policies and practices for grandfamilies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1495-1515
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Family Issues
Volume42
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We express appreciation to the following individuals for their considerable efforts on behalf of this project: Shuang Bi, Aaron Guest, Rachel Swanson, and Lily Weddle. Special appreciation goes to Project Managers Glenn Kincaid and Barbara Bowling. The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This project was supported by The Retirement Research Foundation [#2014-211: Schoenberg]; Igniting Research Collaborations [Keller & Schoenberg]; and the University of Kentucky Center for Clinical Translational Sciences [Keller]. The CCTS is funded by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, National Institutes of Health, through grant number UL1TR001998. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the Retirement Research Foundation or the NIH.

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This project was supported by The Retirement Research Foundation [#2014-211: Schoenberg]; Igniting Research Collaborations [Keller & Schoenberg]; and the University of Kentucky Center for Clinical Translational Sciences [Keller]. The CCTS is funded by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, National Institutes of Health, through grant number UL1TR001998. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the Retirement Research Foundation or the NIH.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2020.

Keywords

  • caregiver
  • grandparents
  • religious coping
  • rural
  • spiritual coping

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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