Stress and coping among displaced Bosnian refugees: An exploratory study

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International Stress Management Association


Traumatic experiences associated with the recent war in Bosnia (1992–1995) have impacted the lives of many Bosnian refugees and displaced people. Approximately 25% of Bosnians were forced to leave their homes and resettle in other areas of Bosnia or abroad. In this study, 82 displaced Bosnians living in the area of Tuzla, Bosnia, and 53 refugees living in the San Francisco Bay area completed the same questionnaire in the Bosnian language. The study describes war-related stress and the association of marital status, anxiety, depression, and sensitivity levels. Furthermore, being single, having lower anxiety ratings, finding and adapting to a new environment easily, and moving on with their lives indicated better self-reported health. Findings also revealed that being divorced or separated, better self-reported health, and lower anxiety, depression, and sensitivity ratings were predictors of more effective coping.