Negative Life Events and Coping Style among the Young Adults in a Highly Collective Community of Borneo
This qualitative study explored the differences in the interpretation of “negative life events” and the coping style among male and female young adults aged 21-25 in a highly collective community of Borneo. In-depth interviews were deployed, and pattern saturated at 5 males and 5 females. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data. Finding shows that both gender, males and females, were most affected by self-image and identity crisis, implicating sensitivity for social acceptance/rejection, academic bullying, and friendship, family and and financial issues. Females were significantly affected by friendship problems and tended to deal with it using emotional-focused coping, such as, emotional release, whereas males reported rejection/one-sided love problems and tended to cope using action-focused coping style, such as, confronting, as well as action-focused release, such as, playing games. While the findings support the universal findings in the male-female differences in coping with negative events, this study found a unique difference in the coping style of the males to those of the lesser cohesive community - males in this community were found to be celebrating sharing of problems and emotional discomfort with close friends and family, as much as the females. This study suggests that careful considerations need to be given when generalizing the theory of emotional and social disconnectedness, in males in crisis in the highly cohesive community. Future research using mixed methodology can further explain the nature and generalizability of in-crisis males’ emotional and social connectedness in cohesive community, using a larger sample. Findings from this research would be useful to understand how our male and female youngsters in highly collective communities perceive life issues, and the pattern they choose in coping, and further assist in designing effective youth assistance and development programs.
Keywords: negative life events; coping styles; gender; young adults; collective community
Beck, A. T. (1987). Cognitive models of depression. Journal of Cognitive Psychotherapy: An International Quarterly, 1(1), 5-37.
Beck, T. (1967). Depression causes and treatment. University of Pennsylvania Press; Philadephia.
Ben-Porath, J. S., Waller, N. G., & Butcher, J. N. (1991). Assessment of coping: An empirical illustration of the problem of inapplicable items. Journal of Personality Assessment, 57(1), 162-176.
Benner, P. Tanner, C. A., and Chesla, C. A. (1996). Expertise in nursing practice: Caring, Clinical judgment,
and ethics. New York: Springer.
Billings, A. G., and Moos, R. H. (1981). The role of coping responses and social responses in attenuating the
stress of life events. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 4(2), 137- 139.
Billings, A.G., Cronkite, R.C., Moos, R.H (1983). Social-environmental factors in unipolar depression: Comparisons of depressed patients and no depressed controls. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 92(2), 119- 133.
Burke, R.J., and Weir, T. (1976). Relationship of Wives’ Employment Status to husband, wife and pair satisfaction and performance. Journal of Marriage and Family, 38(2), 279- 287.
Broderick, P. (1998). Early adolescent gender differences in the use of ruminative and distracting coping
strategies. Journal of Early Adolescents, 18, 173-191.
Carleton, R. A., Esparza, P., Thaxter, P. J., and Grant, K. E. (2008). Stress, religious coping resources, and depressive symptoms in an urban adolescent sample. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion. 47(1), 113-121.
Carver, Charles S.; Scheier, Michael F.; Weintraub, Jagdish K. (1989). Assessing coping strategies: A theoretically based approach. Journal Personality and Social Psychology. 56(2), 267-283.
Christianson, S. A. (2014). The handbook of emotion and memory: Research and theory. Psychology Press.
Compas, B. E., Connor-Smith, J. K., Saltzman, H., Thomsen, A. H., & Wadsworth, M. E. (2001). Coping with stress during childhood and adolescence: problems, progress, and potential in theory and research. Psychological Bulletin,
Costa, P. T., & McCrae, R. R. 1994. Stability and change in personality from adolescence through adulthood.
In C. F. Halverson, G. A. Kohnstamm, & R. P. Martin (Eds.), The developing structure of temperament and personality from infancy to adulthood: 139–150. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Costello, C. G. (1993). The advantages of the symptom approach to depression: Symptoms of depression. New
York: John Wiley and Sons, 1–21.
Conner, M. G. (2000). Understanding the difference between men and women. Online Essay Retrieved October, 15, 2014.
Cullen, A. E., Fisher, H. L., Roberts, R. E., Pariante, C. M., & Laurens, K. R. (2014). Daily stressors and negative life events in children at elevated risk of developing schizophrenia. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 204(5), 354-360.
Endler, N. S. & Parker, J. D. (1990). Multidimensional assessment of coping: A critical evaluation. Journal
of Personality and Social Psychology, 58(5), 844-854.
Essau, C. A., & Trommsdorff, G. (1996). Coping with university-related problems a cross-cultural comparison. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 27(3), 315-328.
Folkman, S. (1984). Personal control and stress and coping processes: a theoretical analysis. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 46(4),839.
Folkman, S., & Lazarus, R. S. (1980). An analysis of coping in a middle-aged community sample. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 21(3), 219-239.
Galaif, E. R., Sussman, S., Chou, C. P., & Wills, T. A. (2003). Longitudinal relations among depression, stress,
and coping in high risk youth. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 32(4), 243-258.
Gelhaar, T., Seiffge-Krenke, I., Borge, A., Cicognani, E., Cunha, M., Loncaric D., Macek, P., Steinhausen H., &
Metzke C.W. (2007). Adolescent coping with everyday stressors: A seven-nation study of youth from central, eastern, southern, and northern Europe. European Journal of Developmental Psychology,
Hankin, B. L., & Abramson, L. Y. (1999). Development of gender differences
in depression: Description and possible explanations. Annals of Medicine, 31(6), 372-379.
Han, S. S., Weisz, J. R., & Weiss, B. (2001). Specificity of relations between children’s control-related beliefs and internalizing and externalizing psychopathology. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 69(2). 240.
Hirsch, J. K., Wolford, K., LaLonde, S. M., Brunk, L., & Parker-Morris, A. (2009). Optimistic explanatory
style as a moderator of the association between negative life events and suicide ideation. Crisis, 30(1),
Korn, C. W., Sharot, T., Walter, H., Heekeren, H. R., & Dolan, R. J. (2014). Depression is related to an
absence of optimistically biased belief updating about future life events. Psychological Medicine,
Lazarus, R.S., & Folkman, S. (1984). Stress, Appraisal and Coping. New York: Springer. Levenson, R. W. (1994). The nature of emotion: Fundamental questions. In Human emotion: A functional view, 1, 123-126.
Marsella, S. & Gratch, J. (2002). A step toward irrationality: using emotion to change belief. In Proceedings of
the first international joint conference on Autonomous agents and multiagent systems. ACM.
Matud, M. P. (2004). Gender differences in stress and coping styles. Personality and Individual Differences, 37(7), 1401-1415.
Mikulincer, M. (2013). Human learned helplessness: A coping perspective. Springer Science & Business Media.
Mitchell, R. E., Cronkite, R. C., & Moos, R. H. (1983). Stress, coping, and depression among married couples. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 92(4), 433.
Murberg, T. A., & Bru, E. (2005). The role of coping styles as predictors of depressive symptoms among adolescents: A prospective study. Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, 46(4), 385-393. Pearlin, L. I., & Schooler, C. (1978). The structure of coping. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 2-21.
Petty, R., Ostrom, T. M., & Brock, T. C.(2014). Cognitive responses in persuasion. Psychology Press.
Rabkin, J. G., & Struening, E. L. (1976). Life events, stress, and illness. Science, 194(4269), 1013-1020. Quevedo, R. J. M., & Abella, M. C. (2011). Well-being and personality: Facetlevel analyses. Personality and Individual Differences, 50(2), 206-
Seiffge-Krenke, I., & Klessinger, N. (2000). Long-term effects of avoidant coping on adolescents’ depressive symptoms. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 29(6), 617-630.
Skitch, S. A., & Abela, J. R. (2008). Rumination in response to stress as a common vulnerability factor to depression and substance misuse in adolescence. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 36(7), 1029-
Snyder, C. R., & Ford, C. E. (Eds.). (2013). Coping with negative life events: Clinical and social psychological
perspectives. Springer Science & Business Media.
Stanton, A. L., Kirk, S. B., Cameron, C. L., & Danoff-Burg, S. (2000). Coping through emotional approach: scale
construction and validation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 78(6), 1150.
Steffensmeier, D., & Allan, E. (1998). The nature of female offending: Patterns and explanations. Female offenders: Critical perspectives and effective interventions (pp.5-29).
Gaitherburg, MD: Aspen. Sveinbjornsdottir, S., & Thorsteinsson, E. B. (2008). Adolescent coping
scales: A critical psychometric review. Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, 49(6), 533-548.
Tella, A., & Akande, S. (2007). Children’s reading habits and availability of books in Botswana primary
schools: Implications for achieving quality education. The Reading Matrix, 7(2).
Verner-Filion, J., Vallerand, R. J., Donahue, E. G., Moreau, E., Martin,
A., Mageau, G. A., & Martin, A. (2014). Passion, coping, and anxiety in sport: the interplay between
key motivational and self-regulatory processes. International Journal of Sport Psychology, 45(6), 516-
Wasserman, D. (Ed.). (2015). Suicide: an unnecessary death. Oxford University Press.
Copyright Transfer Statement for Journal
1) In signing this statement, the author(s) grant UNIMAS Publisher an exclusive license to publish their original research papers. The author(s) also grant UNIMAS Publisher permission to reproduce, recreate, translate, extract or summarize, and to distribute and display in any forms, formats, and media. The author(s) can reuse their papers in their future printed work without first requiring permission from UNIMAS Publisher, provided that the author(s) acknowledge and reference publication in the Journal.
2) For open access articles, the author(s) agree that their articles published under UNIMAS Publisher are distributed under the terms of the CC-BY-NC-SA (Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, for non-commercial purposes, provided the original work of the author(s) is properly cited.
3) For subscription articles, the author(s) agree that UNIMAS Publisher holds copyright, or an exclusive license to publish. Readers or users may view, download, print, and copy the content, for academic purposes, subject to the following conditions of use: (a) any reuse of materials is subject to permission from UNIMAS Publisher; (b) archived materials may only be used for academic research; (c) archived materials may not be used for commercial purposes, which include but not limited to monetary compensation by means of sale, resale, license, transfer of copyright, loan, etc.; and (d) archived materials may not be re-published in any part, either in print or online.
4) The author(s) is/are responsible to ensure his or her or their submitted work is original and does not infringe any existing copyright, trademark, patent, statutory right, or propriety right of others. Corresponding author(s) has (have) obtained permission from all co-authors prior to submission to the journal. Upon submission of the manuscript, the author(s) agree that no similar work has been or will be submitted or published elsewhere in any language. If submitted manuscript includes materials from others, the authors have obtained the permission from the copyright owners.
5) In signing this statement, the author(s) declare(s) that the researches in which they have conducted are in compliance with the current laws of the respective country and UNIMAS Journal Publication Ethics Policy. Any experimentation or research involving human or the use of animal samples must obtain approval from Human or Animal Ethics Committee in their respective institutions. The author(s) agree and understand that UNIMAS Publisher is not responsible for any compensational claims or failure caused by the author(s) in fulfilling the above-mentioned requirements. The author(s) must accept the responsibility for releasing their materials upon request by Chief Editor or UNIMAS Publisher.
6) The author(s) should have participated sufficiently in the work and ensured the appropriateness of the content of the article. The author(s) should also agree that he or she has no commercial attachments (e.g. patent or license arrangement, equity interest, consultancies, etc.) that might pose any conflict of interest with the submitted manuscript. The author(s) also agree to make any relevant materials and data available upon request by the editor or UNIMAS Publisher.