The community is often considered a resource for coping with health-related stress but has potential for negative effects when coping with fertility problems. In this study, we examined the associations between the social–environmental variables (seeking the support of the community, perception of pressure from the community, and perception of spouse support as a possible moderator of this pressure) and emotional adjustment to fertility problems among religious Jewish women in Israel, a highly pronatalist society. Data were collected from January to August 2011. Structural equation modeling using data from 186 women indicated that perception of pressure from the community was associated with poorer emotional adjustment. This association was not moderated by perceived spouse support, but spouse support was associated with better adjustment. Seeking the support of the community was found to be composed of two dimensions: Seeking Ties and Belonging to the Community, which was associated with poorer adjustment, and Seeking Approval and Recognition from the Community, which was associated with better adjustment. These results point to the complexity of dealing with health-related stress when it comes to important community values. Understanding this complexity can help professionals conduct culturally sensitive evaluation and treatment that will contribute to women’s emotional adjustment to fertility problems.
- emotional adjustment