Self-regulation and Religious Coping Among Religious Women Undergoing Infertility Treatments
1Zefat Academic College and Haifa University, School of Social Work, Israel
2Tel Aviv University, School of Social Work, Israel
Background: Infertility is highly stressful for religious women. Based on the Self-regulation Model, we tested the associations between perceptions of infertility, coping, and psychological adjustment. Methods: 186 religious Israeli women undergoing infertility treatment filled in questionnaires assessing perceptions of infertility (based on the IPQ-R), religious coping (turning to God /the community /Rabbis), and psychological adjustment (distress and well-being). Findings: The full study model was tested by structural equations modeling. Perceptions of lower control and greater severity (chronicity and consequences) were related to poorer adjustment. Religious coping did not mediate these associations but had independent associations with adjustment: Seeking Rabbi support was associated with lower distress and seeking community support had both positive and negative associations with adjustment. Discussion: The data support the importance of illness perceptions and coping for adjustment to health threats yet suggest that coping is an independent factor, not a mediator. The findings highlight the importance of studying coping and adjustment within the socio-cultural context.