The Cost of Cancer: The Association of Financial and Cancer-Related Stress on Maladaptive Coping Styles in Families with a Cancer Diagnosis

Emily M. Johnson, Donald Bruce Ross

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

According to the American Cancer Society (2020), it is estimated that 1.8 million new cancer diagnoses will occur in 2019 in the United States. Due to the frequency of cancer diagnoses and the increasing costs of treatment, financial stress is common among cancer patients. Guided by the Family Systems Illness Model (FSI), a cross-sectional study of individuals and family members where there was an active cancer diagnosis (n = 53) was conducted. The study utilized structural equation modeling to examine the impact of cancer stress and financial stress on maladaptive family coping mechanisms, and in turn, their effect on family communication and satisfaction. Findings indicate individuals with higher financial stress reported greater cancer stress. In turn, individuals with higher cancer stress, reported higher rigidity in their family coping which was associated with less family satisfaction. Additionally, as individuals reported greater family disengagement and chaos, lower levels of family communication and satisfaction were found. These findings provide evidence to the complex stresses experienced by cancer patients and their families. Therapeutic implications of how emotionally focused therapy may support these families dealing with a cancer diagnosis are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)323-332
Number of pages10
JournalContemporary Family Therapy
Volume45
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.

Keywords

  • Cancer
  • Coping
  • Family finance
  • Finance
  • Financial counseling
  • Stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The Cost of Cancer: The Association of Financial and Cancer-Related Stress on Maladaptive Coping Styles in Families with a Cancer Diagnosis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this