Quality of Life Research

, Volume 26, Issue 1, pp 73–84 | Cite as

Match between culture and social support: Acculturation moderates the relationship between social support and well-being of Chinese American breast cancer survivors

Article

Abstract

Purpose

Social support does not always lead to health benefits; the outcomes depend on the match between the need and the provision of social support. Culture shapes individuals’ preference of social support types (e.g., supportive communication, social companionship, and tangible support). The present study examined how the association between social support and well-being may vary as a function of acculturation among minority cancer survivors.

Methods

One hundred and twenty-three Chinese American breast cancer survivors were invited to complete a questionnaire package.

Results

Findings showed that acculturation moderated the association of social support subtypes with psychological and physical well-being. Higher emotional/information support was associated with better quality of life and less physical symptoms among highly acculturated cancer survivors but more physical symptoms among those who were less acculturated. Tangible support was associated with more physical symptoms among highly acculturated cancer survivors but less physical symptoms among those who are less acculturated. Positive social interaction was associated with better quality of life and less physical symptoms among less acculturated cancer survivors but not associated with quality of life or physical symptoms among their highly acculturated counterparts.

Conclusion

The findings pointed to the significance of acculturation in breast cancer experience among minority women, especially its interplay with social support transactions.

Keywords

Acculturation Social support Cancer survivorship Quality of life Breast cancer Chinese American 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of HoustonHoustonUSA

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