Yours, Mine, Ours: The
Relational Context of
Kristin D. Mickelson
Kent State University
Renee F. Lyons and Michael J. L. Sullivan
James C. Coyne
University of Pennsylvania
We are friends; we must assist each other to bear our burdens.
Native American Proverb (Osage)
If, as this saying suggests, it is through working together that many of life–s challenges are confronted, why does the research on coping with life stress not include a
a Sections of this chapter are reprinted by permission of Sage Publications Ltd from Lyons, R. F.,
Mickelson, K. D., Sullivan, M. J. L., and Coyne, J. C, Coping as a communal process, Journal of Social
and Personal Relationships, 15(5), pp. 579–605, © Sage Publications Ltd. 1998. The authors would like
to thank Steve Duck and Barbara R. Sarason for their comments on an earlier draft of this chapter.