Date of Paper

5-2014

Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)

Department

Social Work

First Advisor

Abel Knochel

Abstract

This study explored the similarities and differences in stressors that individuals in interracial unions come accross, based on the racial makeup of the couple. This study investigated the following research question: what are the fundamental stressors that impact a heterosexual non-White individual that marries a White partner? How, if at all, do these stressors vary by the race of the non-White individual? Twenty videos posted on YouTube under the search term "interracial marriage stress" were found using quota sampling. Ten of the videos had a White male and a on-White female and ten of the videos had a White female and a non-White male. The study used content analysis and found that many individuals in interracial marriage dealt with stress from families' views on interracial marriage and their geographic location. Historic events (e.g.legacy of slavery and lynchings) affected some of the couples within this data set. Time was a theme; it played a role in healing wounds and participants learned over time ways to deal with the added stress that comes from interracial relationships. This study suggests that more research needs to be conducted on interracial relationships and the different variations of interracial relationships. Educating those that work with interracial couples or their children is needed to address this issue in a more systemic manner.

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