A Social Interaction Analysis of the Daily Conversations of Couples Coping with Breast Cancer

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/222896
Title:
A Social Interaction Analysis of the Daily Conversations of Couples Coping with Breast Cancer
Author:
Robbins, Megan L.
Issue Date:
2012
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Abstract:
This dissertation used naturalistically-observed snippets of actual conversations of couples coping with breast cancer to understand how often, with whom, and how couples talk about cancer and other topics, and how these conversations relate to both partners' adjustment to the experience. Fifty-six breast cancer patients undergoing treatment and their spouses wore the Electronically Activated Recorder (EAR) for one weekend and completed adjustment questionnaires at baseline and a two-month follow-up. The first study revealed that couples discussed cancer in fewer than 10% of their conversations, and that these conversations occurred more frequently with each other than with friends and family. Cancer conversations tended to be informational and supportive, and spouses', rather than patients', discussion of cancer tended to be more related to adjustment. The second study analyzed the social language used within couples' cancer-related and other topics of conversation. Specifically, it examined the associations between we-talk (first-person plural pronouns), I-talk (first-person singular pronouns), and you-talk (second-person pronouns) and couples' adjustment. Results revealed that, contrary to prediction, both partners' we-talk was associated with concurrent, rather than future, adjustment. Further, both partners' focus on the spouse, indicated by I-talk and you-talk, was related to better adjustment for spouses. The findings in this dissertation indicate that psychosocial factors influence spouses' adjustment at least as much as patients' adjustment to breast cancer, and that couples without an exclusive focus on the patient may fare better overall.
Type:
text; Electronic Dissertation
Keywords:
couples; language use; naturalistic observation; Psychology; breast cancer; coping
Degree Name:
Ph.D.
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Graduate College; Psychology
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Advisor:
Mehl, Matthias R.

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoenen_US
dc.titleA Social Interaction Analysis of the Daily Conversations of Couples Coping with Breast Canceren_US
dc.creatorRobbins, Megan L.en_US
dc.contributor.authorRobbins, Megan L.en_US
dc.date.issued2012-
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en_US
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en_US
dc.description.abstractThis dissertation used naturalistically-observed snippets of actual conversations of couples coping with breast cancer to understand how often, with whom, and how couples talk about cancer and other topics, and how these conversations relate to both partners' adjustment to the experience. Fifty-six breast cancer patients undergoing treatment and their spouses wore the Electronically Activated Recorder (EAR) for one weekend and completed adjustment questionnaires at baseline and a two-month follow-up. The first study revealed that couples discussed cancer in fewer than 10% of their conversations, and that these conversations occurred more frequently with each other than with friends and family. Cancer conversations tended to be informational and supportive, and spouses', rather than patients', discussion of cancer tended to be more related to adjustment. The second study analyzed the social language used within couples' cancer-related and other topics of conversation. Specifically, it examined the associations between we-talk (first-person plural pronouns), I-talk (first-person singular pronouns), and you-talk (second-person pronouns) and couples' adjustment. Results revealed that, contrary to prediction, both partners' we-talk was associated with concurrent, rather than future, adjustment. Further, both partners' focus on the spouse, indicated by I-talk and you-talk, was related to better adjustment for spouses. The findings in this dissertation indicate that psychosocial factors influence spouses' adjustment at least as much as patients' adjustment to breast cancer, and that couples without an exclusive focus on the patient may fare better overall.en_US
dc.typetexten_US
dc.typeElectronic Dissertationen_US
dc.subjectcouplesen_US
dc.subjectlanguage useen_US
dc.subjectnaturalistic observationen_US
dc.subjectPsychologyen_US
dc.subjectbreast canceren_US
dc.subjectcopingen_US
thesis.degree.namePh.D.en_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen_US
thesis.degree.disciplinePsychologyen_US
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.contributor.advisorMehl, Matthias R.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberSbarra, Daviden_US
dc.contributor.committeememberGreenberg, Jeffen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberMehl, Matthias R.en_US
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