Title page for ETD etd-121198-102319

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Donnell, Angela S.
URN etd-121198-102319
Title Inside Interracial Marriages: Accounts of Black-White Couples
Degree Master of Science
Department Human Development
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Bird, Gloria W. Committee Chair
Rogers, Cosby Steele Committee Member
Sporakowski, Michael J. Committee Member
  • stess
  • maintenance
  • coping
  • Black-White couples
  • interracial couples
  • interracial
  • marriage
Date of Defense 1998-12-01
Availability restricted



Angela S. Donnell


The purpose of this qualitative study was to investigate the chronic daily concerns that eight self-identified Black-White interracial couples described as stressful and to identify the coping strategies that they utilized to reduce feelings of distress. Another goal of this study was to discover the actions that these eight couples took to maintain marital satisfaction. This investigation consisted of a total of 24 interviews, 16 individual and 8 couple interviews, based on the research questions guided by stress and coping theory. Couples identified three chronic stressors: Worrying About Children, Wanting to be Accepted, and Building a Successful Marriage; Nine coping strategies were identified: Distancing, Putting Family First, Problem-Solving, Accepting of Problems, Having Faith in God, Denial, Communicating With Spouse, Positive Reframing/Reflecting, and Escaping. Five maintenance behaviors were identified as well: Having Couple/Family Time, Communicating, Being Considerate, Getting Away Together, and Planning/Remembering Special Occasions.

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