Exploring the Experiences of Stress Related to Immigration to the uk and Coping Strategies
1Leeds Metropolitan University
Background: This study explored Eastern European immigrants’ stressful experiences regarding immigration to the UK and the coping strategies they applied to reduce such stress. Methods: Eight Eastern European (e.g., Russia, Latvia and Lithuania) participants took part in semi-structured interviews. Thematic analysis was employed in analysing the data. Findings: Four themes were identified: ‘Pre-immigration factors and life quality in the UK’, ‘Post-immigration stress’, ‘Resources for coping’ and ‘Coping strategy’. Participants were dissatisfied with their lives in the UK and experienced loneliness, depressive feelings, discriminatory behaviour of the host society, language difficulties and work-related stress. Pre-immigration factors such as reasons to immigrate, expectations and preparation contributed to the stressful experiences and the possession of resources for coping with stress. Discussions: Coming from the Post-Soviet countries, participants’ mentality differed greatly from the one in the UK. They had poor psychological preparation and high expectations of the host country, which subsequently influenced their experiences of stress and coping strategies applied.