The Role of Work-Family Conflict in Portuguese Nurses’ Stress Responses, Marital Adjustment and job Attitudes
1University of Minho, School of Nursing, Braga, Portugal
2University of Houston, Texas Institute for Measurement, Evaluation and Statistics (TIMES) & Department of Psychology, USA
3University of Houston-Clear Lake, School of Human Sciences & Humanities, USA
4University of Minho, School of Psychology, Braga, Portugal
Background: This study investigated the impact of work-family conflict in Portuguese nurses’ stress responses, the quality of their marital adjustment and their attitudes toward work. Methods: The sample consists of 310 female hospital nurses (Age: M = 33.83; SD = 8.70). Measures were the Portuguese versions of the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12) and the Brief Personal Survey-Revised, to measure stress responses; the Organizational Climate Questionnaire, to measure job attitudes; the Work-Family Conflict Scales, to evaluate work-to-family conflict (WFC) and family-to-work conflict (FWC); and the Revised Dyadic Adjustment Scale, to assess marital adjustment. Findings: WFC was higher than FWC, being a significant predictor of all outcomes. Higher WFC was associated with more stress responses (deltaR2= [psychological distress: .132; pressure overload: .140]), reduced marital adjustment (deltaR2= [consensus: .022; satisfaction: .033]), and increased negative attitudes toward work (deltaR2= [global assessment of organizational climate: .120]). FWC predicted guilt feelings (deltaR2= .037) and lowered dyadic consensus (deltaR2= .018) but did not predict job attitudes. Discussion: Findings show that WFC and FWC affect both the work and marital domains. The interface of family and work demands must be considered in occupational health promotion programs, targeting female nurses.