Coping, mental health status, and current life regret in college women who differ in their lifetime pregnancy status: A resilience perspective

Jennifer Langhinrichsen-Rohling, Theresa Rehm, Michelle Breland, Alexis Inabinet

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

This study examined the current mental health status, coping strategies, and perceived life regret of three types of female college students (n = 277): those who had never been pregnant (67.9%, n= 188); those who became pregnant at or before age 18 who were a priori considered to be resilient (14.8%, n = 41); and those who had experienced a pregnancy after age 18 (17.3%, n = 48). Data were collected at a diverse urban public university in the Southeast. This university has a significant number of commuter and non-traditional students. Results indicated that college women who had experienced an adult pregnancy reported significantly fewer maladaptive coping strategies than never-pregnant college women and those who had experienced a teenage pregnancy. Surprisingly, both groups of ever pregnant college women expressed significantly more life regret than never pregnant college women. Among the college women who had experienced a teenage pregnancy, two groups were delineated: those who were "thriving" versus those who were "at-risk" with regards to their current symptoms of depression, hostility, and hopelessness. Women in the "at-risk" group were significantly less likely to be simultaneously parenting and attending college than those in the "thriving" group. One potential implication is that identifying and intervening with these potentially at-risk college women may help improve retention rates and student morale at universities with a diverse student body.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAnxiety in College Students
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Pages129-144
Number of pages16
ISBN (Print)9781606922828
StatePublished - Dec 1 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)

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    Langhinrichsen-Rohling, J., Rehm, T., Breland, M., & Inabinet, A. (2011). Coping, mental health status, and current life regret in college women who differ in their lifetime pregnancy status: A resilience perspective. In Anxiety in College Students (pp. 129-144). Nova Science Publishers, Inc..