Predictors of Cultural Values Conflict for Asian Indian Women

By Kaduvettoor-Davidson, Anju; Inman, Arpana G. | Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development, January 2012 | Go to article overview

Predictors of Cultural Values Conflict for Asian Indian Women


Kaduvettoor-Davidson, Anju, Inman, Arpana G., Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development


This study explored the relationship between the family environments and coping styles and the cultural values conflicts of 110 Asian Indian women. Results indicated that women perceiving supportive family environments had less sex role conflict. Additionally, avoidant and emotion-focused coping predicted high conflict regarding intimate relations and sex role expectations. Implications are discussed.

Este estudio exploro la relacion entre los entornos familiares y los estilos de afrontamiento y los conflictos en valores culturales de 110 mujeres de la India. Los resultados indicaron que las mujeres que perciben un entorno familiar que las apoya sufren mends conflictos con el rol de su sexo. Adicionalmente, el afrontamiento centrado en la evitacion y las emociones predijo un nivel de conflicto elevado relacionado con las relaciones intimas y las expectativas del rol de su sexo. Se discuten las implicaciones.

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The growing number of Asian Indians immigrating to and raising families in the United States has increased the number of Asian Indian women who mint negotiate a bicultural experience (Inman, Constantine, & Ladany, 1999; Roysircar, 2010). As a result, Asian Indian women have been found to experience cultural values conflict (i.e., negative affect resulting from managing opposing cultural expectations and values) in the areas of sex role expectations and intimate relations (Inman, Ladany, Constantine, & Morano, 2001), with generational status (i.e., first and second) differentially influencing their experiences (Inman, 2006). Within this context, family environments (i.e., quality of relationship, degree of emphasis on personal growth, and system maintenance; Moos & Moos, 2002) and family interactions have been found to play a significant role in facilitating or hindering resiliency and socialization for Asian Indian families (Yee, DeBaryshe, Yuen, Kim, & McCubbin, 2007). Specifically, family expectations can create dissonance felt by Asian Indians (Roysircar, Carey, & Koroma, 2010) and influence the level of cultural values conflict experienced by Asian Indian women. In this regard, the coping strategies used by these women are important.

Although coping strategies such as social support and problem- and emotion-focused coping have been found to be relevant for Asian Indians (Bean & Titus, 2009; Inman & Yeh, 2007; Iyer & Haslam, 2003), researchers have also found that some Asian Indians practice avoidance coping methods (e.g., Kuo, Roysircar, & Newby-Clark, 2006; Liang, Nathwani, Ahmad, & Prince, 2010). Thus, the type of interpersonal environment created by family members, the expectations placed on Asian Indian women, and how they cope with these expectations in a cultural context have significant implications for how these women negotiate their bicultural experience (Roysircar, 2010). Accordingly, this study examined the effects of family environment and coping strategies on cultural values conflicts for Asian Indian women living in the United States.

Two research questions guided the study: (a) Which types of family environments predict intimate relations and sex role expectations conflicts? and (b) Which coping strategies predict those conflicts? On the basis of the literature (e.g., Inman et al., 2001; Roysircar, 2010), we believed that a stronger family relationship and greater family emphasis on personal growth would relate to lower levels of sex role expectations and intimate relations conflicts, whereas greater system maintenance would predict higher levels of those conflicts. In examining the relationship between coping and cultural values conflict, we believed that greater use of social support and problem-focused coping would result in lower levels of sex role expectations and intimate relations conflicts, whereas the use of avoidant coping and emotion-focused coping would result in more sex role expectations and intimate relations conflicts for Asian Indian women. …

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