Acculturation, social alienation, and depressed mood in midlife women from the former Soviet Union

Authors

  • Arlene Michaels Miller,

    Corresponding author
    1. Public Health, Mental Health & Administrative Nursing, College of Nursing, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
    • Public Health, Mental Health & Administrative Nursing, University of Illinois at Chicago M/C 802, 845 South Damen Avenue, Room 906, Chicago, IL 60612.
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    • Professor.

  • Olga Sorokin,

    1. Chicago Health After Immigration (CHAI) Project, College of Nursing, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
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    • Project Director.

  • Edward Wang,

    1. Office of Research Facilitation, College of Nursing, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
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    • Research Assistant Professor.

  • Suzanne Feetham,

    1. College of Nursing, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
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    • Professor Emeriti.

  • Michelle Choi,

    1. Center for Community Research, DePaul University, Chicago, IL
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    • Project Director.

  • JoEllen Wilbur

    1. Public Health, Mental Health & Administrative Nursing, College of Nursing, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
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    • Professor.


Abstract

Level of acculturation has been linked to depressed mood in studies across culturally diverse immigrant groups. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of acculturation, social alienation, personal and family stress, and demographic characteristics on depressed mood in midlife immigrant women from the former Soviet Union. Structural equation modeling showed that higher acculturation scores, measured by English language and American behavior, were indirectly related to lower scores for depressed mood. Higher acculturation levels promoted mental health indirectly by reducing social alienation and, subsequently, lowering family and personal stress, both of which had direct relationships to symptoms of depression. These findings support the ecological framework that guided our research and point to the importance of focusing on contextual factors in developing interventions for new immigrants. © 2006 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Res Nurs Health 29:134–146, 2006

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