Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name


Organizational Unit

College of Arts Humanities and Social Sciences

First Advisor

Mary Claire Morr Serewicz, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Christina Foust

Third Advisor

Erin K. Willer

Fourth Advisor

Renee Botta


Boundary turbulence, Communication privacy management, Hope, Resilience, Social support, Spousal bereavement


Using the theoretical framework of Communication Privacy Management, this study sought to determine how trait resilience, state hopefulness, distress disclosure, use of social networks, and boundary turbulence relate to bereaved spouses' life satisfaction. Bereaved spouses (N=149) completed questionnaires at Camp Widow, a weekend-long conference for bereaved spouses held in San Diego, from August 12-14, 2011. Participants were single, engaged or remarried. The average age of the participants is 46.24 years. The average age at time of bereavement reported was 43.71 years. The amount of time that had passed since the death of their spouse was 2.83 years, and the average time participants reported being married was 17.7 years. The percentage of participants who reported having children at the time of their spouse's death was 83.67%. Only 6% of participants were remarried at the time of the study. The average annual income reported by participants was $67, 689. Finally, 93% of participants were white, 142 were female and 7 were male. Using the data collected at Camp Widow, three structural equations models were evaluated for best fit to the data. Results indicate that trait resilience directly predicted state hopefulness, distress disclosure, and boundary turbulence, and that state hopefulness and boundary turbulence predicted life satisfaction. Resilience reported an indirect effect on life satisfaction. Results also indicate the model that best fit the data from the current study was the one in which the relationship between trait resilience and life satisfaction was mediated by state hopefulness, distress disclosure, use of social networks, and boundary turbulence. This study further supports the role of communication in the process of resilience. Possible avenues for further research are explored.

Keywords: communication privacy management, bereaved, resilience, boundary turbulence, hope, social support

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Carrie Lynn West


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

138 p.