Acculturative stress and diminishing family cohesion among recent Latino immigrants

J Immigr Minor Health. 2013 Jun;15(3):484-91. doi: 10.1007/s10903-012-9678-3.


This study investigates a theorized link between Latino immigrants' experience of acculturative stress during their two initial years in the United States (US) and declines in family cohesion from pre- to post-immigration contexts. This retrospective cohort study included 405 adult participants. Baseline assessment occurred during participants' first 12 months in the US. Follow-up assessment occurred during participants' second year in the US. General linear mixed models were used to estimate change in family cohesion and sociocultural correlates of this change. Inverse associations were determined between acculturative stress during initial years in the US and declines in family cohesion from pre-immigration to post-immigration contexts. Participants with undocumented immigration status, those with lower education levels, and those without family in the US generally indicated lower family cohesion. Participants who experienced more acculturative stress and those without family in the US evidenced a greater decline in family cohesion. Results are promising in terms of implications for health services for recent Latino immigrants.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Acculturation*
  • Adult
  • Central America / ethnology
  • Cuba / ethnology
  • Emigrants and Immigrants / psychology*
  • Family Relations / ethnology*
  • Female
  • Hispanic Americans / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Retrospective Studies
  • South America / ethnology
  • Stress, Psychological / ethnology*
  • United States
  • Young Adult