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Keywords:

  • caregivers;
  • caring;
  • stroke

Expressions of stability by urban family caregivers are the focus of this study. Data presented here were collected as part of a larger ethnographic descriptive study that examined caregivers' (N = 24) experience and the meaning of caring as it influences their ability to care for persons with stroke within their African American family systems. For family caregivers, unmet needs and problems with caregiving may occur as depleted resources are compounded by urban decay in many communities. This study was completed within the Framework of Systemic Organization described by Friedemann, in which families, as open systems, strive for well-being. Stability in the family, a component of well-being, addresses traditions and common behavior patterns rooted in basic values and cultural beliefs. Through data analysis, four themes concerning expressions of stability were identified for all caregivers. Caring expressions of stability are defined as (a) emotional burden; (b) evasion of conflicts; (c) motivation from love and a sense of duty between caregivers, the care recipients, and their families; and (d) a filial, ethereal value. Rehabilitation nurses can incorporate these expressions of stability into their assessment, intervention, and evaluation processes, and thereby increase the potential to strengthen successful caring and stability within the caregivers' family systems.