Parents, especially mothers, of critically ill children in the intensive care unit (ICU) report heightened levels of stress and are at greater risk of psychological illness after the child’s ICU stay. Therefore, supportive interventions for parents of critically ill children often focus on identifying stressful triggers and promoting effective coping skills. Importantly, research in non-ICU populations suggests that individual coping styles differ among various racial/ethnic groups. For example, African Americans may tend to use more religious and emotion-focused coping, whereas non-Hispanic Whites rely more on acceptance. Unfortunately, it is unclear how racial/ethnic differences relate to psychological distress among parents of critically ill children—with some studies highlighting no racial/ethnic differences and others reporting higher levels of psychological morbidity among African Americans. Guided by the Multicultural Model of Stress, this study examined racial/ethnic differences in mothers’ ICU-related stress experiences, their coping behaviors, and subsequent...

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