UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

Determinants of support provision : interaction of provider and recipient factors Trobst, Krista Kornelia 1991

Your browser doesn't seem to have a PDF viewer, please download the PDF to view this item.

Item Metadata

Download

Media
831-UBC_1991_A8 T76.pdf [ 2.81MB ]
Metadata
JSON: 831-1.0100518.json
JSON-LD: 831-1.0100518-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): 831-1.0100518-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: 831-1.0100518-rdf.json
Turtle: 831-1.0100518-turtle.txt
N-Triples: 831-1.0100518-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: 831-1.0100518-source.json
Full Text
831-1.0100518-fulltext.txt
Citation
831-1.0100518.ris

Full Text

D E T E R M I N A N T S O F S U P P O R T P R O V I S I O N : I N T E R A C T I O N O F P R O V I D E R A N D R E C I P I E N T F A C T O R S , by K R I S T A K O R N E L I A T R O B S T B . A . , The University of Calgary, 1989 A T H E S I S S U B M I T T E D I N P A R T I A L F U L F I L L M E N T O F T H E R E Q U I R E M E N T S F O R T H E D E G R E E O F M A S T E R O F A R T S i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of Psychology) We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA July 1991 (S) K r i s t a Kornelia Trobst, 1991 in presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of P s y c h o l o g y The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada Date August 22, 1991 DE-6 (2/88) Abstract L i t t l e research has examined the determinants of support provision. This study assessed the importance of provider empathy, provider gender, r e c i p i e n t gender, and r e c i p i e n t expressed d i s t r e s s i n influencing supportiveness. The study made use of a 2 X 2 (gender of coper by d i s t r e s s of coper) between subjects design, with l e v e l of empathy and gender of subject as i n t e r n a l factors. Eighty-one male and 84 female undergraduates completed a measure of d i s p o s i t i o n a l empathy and watched a videotape of a high or low emotion, male or female coper. Respondents then indicated v i a questionnaire responses, t h e i r reactions to the coper and the amounts and kinds of support they would be w i l l i n g to provide. Subjects were then asked to volunteer to act as a peer counselor to the coper. As predicted, r e s u l t s indicated a p o s i t i v e association between supportiveness and empathy. Also consistent with predictions, greater supportiveness was evidenced among women than among men, and a s i g n i f i c a n t portion of t h i s tendency was att r i b u t a b l e to gender differences i n empathy. In general, no differences were found i n supportiveness as a function of the gender of the coper. Last, high d i s t r e s s copers were l i k e d more, and were perceived as needing more support than low d i s t r e s s copers. In turn, participants indicated a greater willingness to provide support to high emotion copers. TABLE OF CONTENTS i i i Abstract i i L i s t of Tables , v L i s t of Figures v i Acknowledgements v i i Introduction 1 Provider Empathy 1 Provider Gender 7 Recipient Gender 9 Recipient's Expressed Distress 11 The Present Study 14 Method 16 Overview 16 Subjects 16 Materials 17 Procedure 18 Dependent Measures 20 I. State Empathy 20 I I . Perceptions of the Coping Portrayal ... 20 I I I . Situation 21 IV. Attractiveness 21 V. Appropriateness 22 VI. General Supportive Intentions 22 VII. Hypothetical Support 22 IX. Behavioral Intent 23 Debriefing 25 i v Results 25 Manipulation Check 25 Preliminary Analyses 26 I. Support 26 I I . Empathy 28 Main Hypotheses 29 I. Provider Empathy 29 I I . Provider Gender 32 I I I . Recipient Gender 34 IV. Recipient's Expressed Distress 35 Model Testing . 38 Discussion 40 Conclusion 48 References 50 LIST OF TABLES Inter/correlations between empathy and support measures LIST OF FIGURES Predicted model of association between variables Obtained model of association between variables Acknowledgements v i i I would l i k e to express my gratitude to the many indi v i d u a l s whose support and assistance made completion of t h i s thesis possible. I would l i k e to thank Rebecca C o l l i n s fo r sharing her knowledge and providing encouragement far beyond the requirements i n her job description. In addition, I give thanks to the other members of my committee, Darrin Lehman and Delroy Paulhus, f o r t h e i r invaluable insight and suggestions. I am indebted to the actors, Missy Christensen, Jason Dedrick, Sean Hayes, and Elaine S t o f f e r McKay whose incredible t a l e n t was portrayed i n the videotapes used i n t h i s study. Also, I would l i k e to thank the research assistants, Malibika Das, Jayne Embree, Sherry Relph, and Monika Tymofievich, for a s s i s t i n g i n the running of the experiment sessions. My deepest thanks to Ken Hemphill for being my role model and providing me with a secure base through his love, patience, and wisdom. Special thanks to my f r i e n d , colleague, and o f f i c e mate, l i a n a Katz for continually providing support, insight, and d i s t r a c t i o n s as only a cohort could. Also, a h e a r t f e l t thank you to my l i f e - l o n g f r i e n d Marcee Platz-Peters whose sense of humor has kept me sane. I would also l i k e to thank my mother whose unconditional love and unwavering b e l i e f i n my a b i l i t i e s have continued to encourage me years a f t e r her passing. In addition, I would l i k e to express thanks to my father for i n s t i l l i n g i n me the b e l i e f that there are no obstacles that hard work cannot overcome. Lastly, I would l i k e to thank my dear friends, F e r l i n Boyer and Karen Braun, for believing, "without a doubt, that I could move a mountain" and being there "to t e l l i t to". 1 Introduction A great deal of research has demonstrated the effectiveness of s o c i a l support i n a l l e v i a t i n g the stress experienced by victims of negative l i f e events (Cohen & W i l l s , 1985; Dunkel-Schetter, 1984; House, Landis, & Umberson, 1988; Schultz & Decker, 1985). However, l i t t l e research has been conducted regarding the determinants of i t s provision. This study w i l l investigate c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of support providers and r e c i p i e n t s , two variables l i k e l y to influence support provision (Dunkel-Schetter & Skokan, 1990). S p e c i f i c a l l y , t h i s study w i l l attempt to assess the importance of provider empathy and provider gender i n determining reactions to an in d i v i d u a l experiencing d i f f i c u l t i e s coping. In addition, the gender and emotionality of the r e c i p i e n t w i l l be considered as important determinants of providers' reactions and t h e i r subsequent willingness to provide support. Provider Empathy The a b i l i t y of support providers to empathize with another i s l i k e l y to influence t h e i r willingness to provide support. While there i s a great deal of debate as to the exact d e f i n i t i o n of empathy, the term, i n i t s most general sense, ref e r s to the reactions of one i n d i v i d u a l to the observed experiences of another (Davis, 1983a). These reactions, when they take the form of concern f o r another's p l i g h t , are l i k e l y to motivate observers to take action so 2 that personal feelings of concern and the d i s t r e s s of unfortunate others may be reduced. Both state (e.g. Aderman, & Berkowitz, 1970; Schroeder, Dovidio, Sibicky, Matthews & A l l e n , 1988; Toi & Batson, 1982) and t r a i t (e.g. Archer, Diaz-Loving, Gollwitzer, Davis, & Foushee, 1981; Davis, 1983b&c; Eisenberg, M i l l e r , Schaller, Fabes, Fu l t z , S h e l l , & Shea, 1989) empathy have been examined as determinants of help provision i n emergency si t u a t i o n s . In general, findings suggest a p o s i t i v e r e l a t i o n (Batson, Darley, & Coke, 1978), and i n a recent meta-analysis of the e x i s t i n g l i t e r a t u r e , Eisenberg and M i l l e r (1987) found low to moderate po s i t i v e correlations between empathy and prosocial behavior. In addition to making a d i s t i n c t i o n between state and t r a i t measures of empathy, researchers have distinguished between empathy's a f f e c t i v e and cognitive components. A multidimensional measure of i n d i v i d u a l differences i n empathy that incorporates both has been constructed by Davis (1980). The Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI; Davis, 1980) includes a discriminable set of four cognitive and a f f e c t i v e measures (Davis, 1980). Davis' (1980) Perspective-Taking (PT) scale assesses the tendency to adopt the psychological point of view of others. The Empathic Concern (EC) scale assesses "other-oriented" feelings of sympathy or concern. The Personal Distress (PD) scale measures "s e l f - o r i e n t e d " feelings of anxiety and unease. The fourth, Fantasy (FS) scale, measures the tendencies of 3 indivi d u a l s to imagine themselves as the f i c t i t i o u s characters i n movies and books. Two studies have examined the r e l a t i o n between Davis' d i s p o s i t i o n a l subtypes of empathy and prosocial behavior. In one study, Davis (1983b) examined the willingness of students to provide tangible s o c i a l support ( i . e . baby-s i t t i n g , doing chores, and providing transportation) to a woman who was l e f t with the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of caring for her younger s i b l i n g s a f t e r her parents were k i l l e d i n an accident. Results indicated that individuals high i n personal d i s t r e s s (PD) were less l i k e l y to o f f e r support than those low i n personal d i s t r e s s . Empathic concern (EC), however, was p o s i t i v e l y related to support provision. The findings with regard to perspective taking (PT) were mixed, in d i c a t i n g a po s i t i v e r e l a t i o n with helping when subjects were instructed to take the perspective of the woman, and no r e l a t i o n with helping when subjects were simply instructed to observe the woman. In another study, Davis (1983c) examined the ef f e c t s of empathic predispositions i n r e l a t i o n to the annual muscular dystrophy telethon. The tendency to view and contribute to the telethon was s i g n i f i c a n t l y , and p o s i t i v e l y , related to empathic concern, and was unrelated to perspective taking and personal d i s t r e s s . A number of studies have examined state measures of empathy p a r a l l e l to Davis' d i s p o s i t i o n a l subtypes (Batson, Duncan, Ackerman, Buckley, & Birch, 1981; Coke, Batson, & 4 McDavis, 1978; Liebhart, 1972; Schroeder, et a l . , 1988; Toi & Batson, 1982). Batson and his colleagues (Batson, O'Quin, Fult z , Vanderplas, & Isen, 1983) proposed that empathic concern leads to an a l t r u i s t i c motivation to reduce the di s t r e s s of another, whereas personal d i s t r e s s leads to an eg o i s t i c motivation to reduce one's own d i s t r e s s . Questionnaire measures r e f l e c t i n g these two dimensions were obtained from subjects a f t e r exposure to a same-sex victim. Ease of escape from the s i t u a t i o n was varied, and willingness to help was then assessed. Results indicated that subjects high i n personal d i s t r e s s were l i k e l y to help only when i t was d i f f i c u l t to escape from the s i t u a t i o n . In contrast, subjects experiencing a predominance of empathic concern were as l i k e l y to help when escape was easy as when i t was d i f f i c u l t (Batson, et a l . , 1983). These findings lead Batson to conclude that individuals high i n empathic concern are a l t r u i s t i c a l l y motivated to reduce the d i s t r e s s of others, and therefore demonstrate high l e v e l s of helping across s i t u a t i o n s . High personal d i s t r e s s i n d i v i d u a l s , on the other hand, are e g o i s t i c a l l y motivated to reduce t h e i r own d i s t r e s s , and therefore provide a large amount of aid only i n situations where escape from the source of d i s t r e s s i s d i f f i c u l t . There has been some debate concerning the v a l i d i t y of Batson's paradigm with some studies showing e f f e c t s f o r empathic concern (Eisenberg, et a l . , 1989) and others not ( C i a l d i n i , et a l . , 1987; Schaller & C i a l d i n i , 1988). Nonetheless, 5 prosocial behavior appears to be more consistently associated with high l e v e l s of empathic concern than with personal d i s t r e s s , and i s sometimes negatively related to the l a t t e r . The l i t e r a t u r e examining the r e l a t i o n between perspective taking and helping behavior i s mixed. As just noted, two studies found l i t t l e r e l a t i o n between perspective taking and helping (Davis, 1983b&c). Perspective taking increased helping only i n the instance where participants received instructions to take the perspective of the victim. However, Underwood and Moore's (1982) meta-analysis found a p o s i t i v e r e l a t i o n between perspective taking and helping i n studies using children as subjects. They argue that perspective taking (awareness of another's unpleasant a f f e c t i v e state) causes a sharing of that state and a motive to decrease the other's d i s t r e s s . This suggests that perspective taking may a c t u a l l y increase one's tendency to experience empathic concern, rather than a f f e c t i n g helping d i r e c t l y . A study examining the r e l a t i o n between helping behavior and perspective taking among adults has found support for t h i s notion (Coke, et a l . , 1978). S p e c i f i c a l l y , i t was found that instructions to take the perspective of the i n d i v i d u a l i n need led to an increase i n the l e v e l of empathic emotion reported. In turn, t h i s increase i n empathy corresponded with an increase i n motivation to see the other's need reduced. 6 In short, empathy i n i t ' s most general sense has been found to be strongly associated with helping behavior. Of the empathy subtypes proposed by Davis (1980) the best predictor of willingness to provide assistance appears to be empathic concern. The r e l a t i o n between personal d i s t r e s s and helpfulness, on the other hand, i s less c l e a r , with some studies reporting a negative association (e.g. Davis, 1983b) and others i n d i c a t i n g that individuals experiencing a preponderance of personal d i s t r e s s are more l i k e l y to help when escape from the s i t u a t i o n i s d i f f i c u l t (Batson, et a l . , 1983). Perspective taking i s also l i k e l y to be associated with support provision, but the e f f e c t i s probably l i m i t e d to i t s a b i l i t y to increase an individual's tendency to experience empathic concern. While a great deal of research has examined the importance of empathy i n predicting prosocial behavior, experiments have generally focused on helping behavior provided to a stranger i n an emergency s i t u a t i o n . Although some studies have made use of paradigms approximating s o c i a l support-like s i t u a t i o n s , empathy has not been considered i n support research per se. While i t i s expected that the association between empathy and s o c i a l support w i l l c l o s e l y p a r a l l e l the empathy/helping behavior findings, t h i s i s s t i l l an unresolved issue given the way the two constructs have been operationalized. While both s o c i a l support and helping behavior involve the provision of assistance during periods 7 of need, there are c l e a r differences between these two forms of prosocial behavior. What i s t y p i c a l l y deemed "helping behavior" (the o f f e r of assistance to a stranger i n an emergency situation) i s conceptually d i s t i n c t from what we commonly think of as " s o c i a l support" (the ongoing instrumental or emotional assistance provided to a loved one). The present study w i l l attempt to determine whether empathy continues to emerge as an important predictor of prosocial behavior when examined i n a s o c i a l support context. Provider Gender Gender i s another c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of potential support providers that i s l i k e l y to influence the p r o f f e r i n g of support. Eagly and Crowley (1986) discuss helping as a r o l e behavior, regulated by s o c i a l norms, and provision of s o c i a l support may also be regarded as such. As Eagly and Crowley (1986) point out, the norms governing helping are quite d i f f e r e n t for males and females, and therefore, men and women may be expected to d i f f e r i n t h e i r a b i l i t y or willingness to provide support to an i n d i v i d u a l i n need. Men have been found to be p a r t i c u l a r l y h e l p f u l toward strangers, i n r i s k y or dangerous situations (Eagly & Crowley, 1986). This i s consistent with the male gender ro l e , which includes competency-related attributes such as independence, leadership, self-confidence, good decision making a b i l i t i e s , and calmness i n a c r i s i s (Bern, 1974; Broverman, et a l . , 1972). Men are expected to be heroic and 8 chivalrous, and therefore helping behaviors performed by men are l i k e l y to be ri s k y or protective i n nature, and may be directed towards strangers as well as intimates (Eagly and Crowley, 1986). The female gender r o l e , i n contrast, has often been associated with warmth and expressiveness-related q u a l i t i e s such as s e n s i t i v i t y to the feelings of others, a b i l i t y to express tender feelings (Broverman, et a l . , 1972), kindness, compassion, helpfulness, and the a b i l i t y to devote oneself to others (Bern, 1974). Accordingly, women are often expected to provide for the needs of others (Bernard, 1981; Kessler & McLeod, 1984). Consistent with t h i s , i n the few studies reporting data of t h i s kind, women have been found to be the primary providers of support to close others. For instance, Day (1985) has noted that 70% to 80% of caregivers to the e l d e r l y are women. Also, G r i f f i t h (1985), i n a study of demographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of support providers, found that women were somewhat more l i k e l y to be r e l i e d on for support than men. Thus, women may be more l i k e l y to provide support to a distressed other, and t h i s difference may be based i n gender ro l e s . Gender differences i n empathic emotion suggest a si m i l a r prediction to that generated by r o l e behavior. A number of studies have demonstrated that women are generally more empathic than men (Brehm, Powell, & Coke, 1984; Hoffman, 1977; Zarbatany, Hartmann, Gelfand, Vinciguerra, 1985). Thus, to the extent that empathy influences 9 supportive behavior, women might be expected to be more supportive than men. I t i s not clea r at present, whether gender r o l e s , gender differences i n empathy, or both are responsible f o r women's higher l e v e l s of supportiveness. The present study w i l l attempt to examine the r e l a t i v e importance of gender roles versus sex differences i n empathy as the source of any sex differences i n support. To do so, empathic emotion w i l l be used as a covariate i n gender-e f f e c t s analyses. To the extent that empathic concern i s the d r i v i n g force i n motivating the provision of assistance, gender differences i n helping behavior should be greatly reduced when the ef f e c t s of empathy are controlled s t a t i s t i c a l l y . Recipient Gender Whether or not assistance i s given i s also l i k e l y to be determined by the gender of the re c i p i e n t . The degree to which an in d i v i d u a l f e e l s comfortable i n o f f e r i n g assistance may depend on the gender of the in d i v i d u a l i n need. Gender stereotypes have t y p i c a l l y portrayed women as more needing, wanting, and accepting of assistance than men. Therefore, with t h i s stereotype i n mind, when approaching an apparent need s i t u a t i o n an in d i v i d u a l i s more l i k e l y to o f f e r support i f the needy other i s female, and hence i s l i k e l y to be wanting and accepting of such assistance. While studies examining the r e l a t i o n between gender of the provider, gender of the re c i p i e n t , and helping behavior have often found that i n d i v i d u a l s are more l i k e l y to help 10 others of the opposite gender (e.g. Bickman, 1974) r e s u l t s of a recent meta-analysis have suggested that t h i s tendency may be more prevalent f o r male providers. S p e c i f i c a l l y , Eagly and Crowley (1986) found that women are more l i k e l y than men to receive help, and that t h i s assistance i s more l i k e l y to be provided by men. Presumably, assistance provided by men to women i s consistent with the male gender role of ch i v a l r y , and the female role of wanting, needing and accepting assistance. Men, on the other hand, are equally l i k e l y to receive a i d from males and females. Evidence from the s o c i a l support l i t e r a t u r e suggests the same conclusion. For instance, Vaux (1986) reviews a number of studies comparing the amount and types of support available to men and women. Overall, differences i n support a v a i l a b i l i t y tend to favor women. In p a r t i c u l a r , Burda, Vaux, and S c h i l l (1984) have found that women tend to be provided with more emotional kinds of support than men. In addition, Burda et a l . (1984) found a v a i l a b i l i t y of support to vary such that feminine and androgynous indivi d u a l s were l i k e l y to be provided with more support than undifferentiated or masculine i n d i v i d u a l s . These findings suggest that gender differences i n support receipt may be influenced, i n part, by sex-role orientation, favoring the presence of feminine (expressive) c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . However, as Burda, et a l . (1984) point out, females, feminine, and androgynous individuals are also more l i k e l y to mobilize t h e i r support resources i n times of need than are males, 11 masculine, and undifferentiated i n d i v i d u a l s . I t i s therefore d i f f i c u l t to ascertain whether or not differences i n support a v a i l a b i l i t y would s t i l l be found when mobilization e f f o r t s are held constant. Recipient's Expressed Distress The p o s i t i v e r e l a t i o n between expressive c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s and support receipt may be explained i n that expressiveness, or the signa l i n g of d i s t r e s s , may serve as an indicator of need. Past research has, i n fac t , found that women experiencing greater d i s t r e s s have more support available to them than women experiencing less d i s t r e s s (Dunkel-Schetter, Folkman, & Lazarus, 1987; Hobfoll & Lerman, 1988; Hobfoll & Lerman, 1989). These studies suggest a p o s i t i v e r e l a t i o n between expression of d i s t r e s s and support a v a i l a b i l i t y . However, other studies have suggested that when d i s t r e s s i s extreme or ongoing avoidant behavior (on the part of providers) may r e s u l t (Coates, Wortman, & Abbey, 1979; Dunkel-Schetter, 1984). For instance, findings of Coates et a l . (1979) have indicated that victims who express t h e i r pain or negative a f f e c t are more l i k e l y to be judged as maladjusted, suggesting that t h i s behavior i s seen as inappropriate or undesirable i n some way. This may, i n turn, lead to avoidance on the part of providers. Studies examining the importance of copers' displayed emotions, or method of coping (coping "portrayals") i n determining reactions to an in d i v i d u a l have primarily used 12 ratings of attractiveness and adjustment, rather than willingness to provide support, as dependent measures. For instance, S i l v e r , Wortman, and Crofton (1990) conducted a study manipulating the coping portrayals of women who were said either to be healthy or to have cancer. Reactions of subjects to these individuals were assessed by obtaining ratings of a t t r a c t i o n and desire for future interactions with the target. Results indicated that individuals responded l e a s t favorably to targets presented as coping poorly. In the S i l v e r et a l . (1990) study, however, i t i s d i f f i c u l t to determine which aspect of the coping portrayals was causing subjects' reactions, as portrayals varied not only i n the degree to which individuals were successfully engaging i n coping e f f o r t s , but expressions of d i s t r e s s were altered as well. I t i s therefore d i f f i c u l t to ascertain whether the tendency for poor copers to receive more negative evaluations i s the r e s u l t of the d i s t r e s s expressed by these indiv i d u a l s or t h e i r apparent i n a b i l i t y to engage i n successful coping, or both. Taken together these studies provide evidence that expression of d i s t r e s s has an important influence on reactions to the coper. However, while the expression of d i s t r e s s appears to have a negative influence on ratings of attractiveness and adjustment, c o r r e l a t i o n a l studies suggest a p o s i t i v e r e l a t i o n between d i s t r e s s and s o c i a l support a v a i l a b i l i t y . In order to more f u l l y understand the 13 r e l a t i o n between expressions of d i s t r e s s , ratings of attractiveness and willingness to provide support c l a r i f y i n g research i s needed. A second issue i n regard to di s t r e s s i s i t s possible i n t e r a c t i o n with gender of the re c i p i e n t . Studies to date have assessed the importance of di s t r e s s only i n reaction to female victims. Social norms i n our society discourage emotional expression i n men and encourage males to be independent, have good decision-making a b i l i t i e s and to remain calm i n a c r i s i s (Bern, 1974; Broverman, et a l . , 1972). A deviation from these norms may, i n turn, be regarded as a sign of maladjustment. Hence, distressed males may be more l i k e l y to be perceived negatively than distressed females. On the other hand, the b e l i e f that a great deal of inner turmoil must underlie any expression of emotion ( p a r t i c u l a r l y i n men) may serve as a signal to others that a great deal of support i s needed. Because i t i s counter to expectations, d i s t r e s s expressed by men may also e l i c i t stronger feelings of empathic concern than d i s t r e s s expressed by women, and may enhance willingness to provide assistance to a greater degree, as well. In sum, reactions to d i s t r e s s , whether po s i t i v e or negative, are l i k e l y to be more extreme when expressed by males than by females. Any i n t e r a c t i o n between d i s t r e s s and gender of rec i p i e n t may be q u a l i f i e d by a three-way in t e r a c t i o n with gender of provider. S p e c i f i c a l l y , women may be more w i l l i n g to provide support to emotional males than to r e l a t i v e l y unemotional ones, while male providers are l i k e l y to show a reverse pattern. As Eagly and Crowley (1986) indicate, women are often restrained i n t h e i r provision of assistance to male strangers because they are seen as threatening or dangerous. To the extent that these fears do i n fact prevent women from o f f e r i n g assistance to men, i t i s l i k e l y that women w i l l provide more support to highly emotional and vulnerable males than to less emotional ones, as women may fe e l less threatened by such i n d i v i d u a l s . Male providers, on the other hand, may be less supportive of a male coper who i s distressed as compared to a male who i s less so. Males are unaccustomed to emotional disclosure from other males (Narus & Fischer, 1982), and therefore, may f e e l uncomfortable i n i t s presence. This sense of unease may lead to avoidance, and hence reduce support provision to the distressed male. The Present Study The present study examines the ef f e c t s of provider empathy, provider gender, r e c i p i e n t gender and rec i p i e n t d i s t r e s s i n a peer counseling context. I t i s anticipated that indi v i d u a l s high i n di s p o s i t i o n a l empathic concern w i l l indicate a greater willingness to provide support than those low i n empathic concern. Because t h i s context i s one from which "escape" i s easy, a d i s p o s i t i o n a l tendency to experience personal di s t r e s s i s expected to be negatively related or unrelated 15 to willingness to provide support. Empathic perspective taking i s expected to be associated with helping behavior; however, t h i s r e l a t i o n i s expected to be mediated by state l e v e l s of empathic concern, rather than a d i r e c t e f f e c t . I t i s also hypothesized that the providers' and r e c i p i e n t s ' gender w i l l a f f e c t willingness to provide support. S p e c i f i c a l l y , female participants are expected to provide more support than males. The extent to which t h i s gender difference i s a function of d i s p o s i t i o n a l empathic concern w i l l be assessed by c o n t r o l l i n g s t a t i s t i c a l l y f or t h i s variable i n gender analyses. I t i s further predicted that women w i l l be the recipien t s of more support than men. In addition, the present study w i l l examine the influence of coper d i s t r e s s upon support provision and coper evaluations. Contrary predictions may be offered regarding t h i s factor. On the one hand, di s t r e s s may increase negative evaluations of the coper's adjustment and attractiveness, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the case of an emotional male r e c i p i e n t . On the other hand, witnessing an indiv i d u a l ' s d i s t r e s s may increase empathic concern and perceptions of need and subsequently increase willingness to provide support. This also i s l i k e l y to be enhanced i n the case of male copers. Lastly, a three-way provider gender by r e c i p i e n t gender by expressed d i s t r e s s i n t e r a c t i o n i s expected. Male providers are l i k e l y to respond more negatively to di s t r e s s 16 i n males than females, while female providers are less l i k e l y to show such an e f f e c t . Method Overview Male and female subjects completed a measure of d i s p o s i t i o n a l empathy and watched a videotape of either a male or a female coper i n a counseling session. The coper displayed either a high or a low amount of d i s t r e s s . Subjects then completed a set of measures evaluating the coper's attractiveness and adjustment. In addition, participants indicated, v i a questionnaire responses, the amount and kinds of support they would provide to an in d i v i d u a l s i m i l a r to the one portrayed i n the videotape. Lastly, subjects were asked to volunteer to act as a peer counselor to the i n d i v i d u a l viewed i n the tape. The t o t a l number of hours and a c t i v i t i e s committed to volunteering were assessed. Thus, the study made use of a 2 X 2 (gender of coper by d i s t r e s s of coper) between-subjects design, with high and low l e v e l s of empathy and gender of subject as i n t e r n a l f a ctors. Subjects Eighty-six male and eighty-five female subjects par t i c i p a t e d i n the experiment for p a r t i a l course c r e d i t . Participants were randomly assigned to experimental conditions. Five males and one female expressed some suspicion regarding the authenticity of the videotapes and, 17 hence, were dropped from a l l analyses. Materials Four versions of a stimulus tape were created. The sett i n g and s c r i p t remained the same across stimulus tapes. In a l l versions an in d i v i d u a l was portrayed i n a counselling session. A high and a low emotion version of the videotape was made by each of two male and two female actors. A between-subjects design was used to p i l o t t e s t the tapes f o r differences between actors i n the same condition, and to ensure that the emotional expression manipulation was successful. Each of the eight videotapes was watched by 6-8 subjects. A manipulation check of coper d i s t r e s s was performed by colla p s i n g across actors and r e c i p i e n t gender, and conducting a t - t e s t between tapes designated a p r i o r i as high and low d i s t r e s s . Ratings of coper d i s t r e s s (on a 7-point scale) were used as the dependent variable. This indicated successful manipulation of d i s t r e s s , t (54) = 3.68, p < .001, with subjects indeed perceiving the actors i n the high emotion tapes as expressing greater d i s t r e s s than those i n the low emotion tapes. To t e s t for actor e f f e c t s , t - t e s t s were then conducted between the two high emotion male versions, high emotion female versions, low emotion male versions, and low emotion female versions. A series of t - t e s t s were conducted using a nine item bipolar rating of coper attractiveness, and ratings (on 7-point scales) of coper d i s t r e s s , coper need, seriousness of the coper's problems, and admirability, 18 appropriateness, and normalcy of the coping portrayal as the dependent variables. In general, very few differences were found. Results indicated no s i g n i f i c a n t differences i n reactions to the two female actresses i n the low emotion versions of the videotapes. One marginally s i g n i f i c a n t difference i n ratings of problem severity, t (12) = 2.03, p = .07, emerged i n reactions to these 2 actresses i n the high emotion versions. With regard to the male low-emotion versions a marginal difference, t (11) = 2.08, p. = .06, emerged i n scores summed across the 9-item measure of attractiveness, and a s i g n i f i c a n t difference was obtained on ratings of the normalcy of the coping portrayal, t (11) = 2.43, p < .03. In the high emotion versions a marginal difference, t (1, 12) = 1.86, p =.09, was found i n ratings of coper d i s t r e s s . Overall, then, there were few differences between actors, with the exception that pretest subjects judged one of the two low emotion males to be more a t t r a c t i v e , and to be coping i n a less normal manner than the other male. Procedure Subjects were c a l l e d and asked to p a r t i c i p a t e i n a study assessing the peer support available to students coping with a variety of problems. A l l subjects were t o l d that the study was being conducted i n order to obtain information for the development of a peer support centre on campus. Upon a r r i v a l , subjects were reminded of the supposed purpose of the experiment and asked to sign a consent form. Subjects were then informed that the Peer Counseling Centre had provided a number of videotapes containing excerpts from counseling sessions which had occurred over the l a s t couple of months. I t was further explained that the ind i v i d u a l i n each of these tapes had given consent for the use of his or her tape i n the study. Participants were informed that each tape would be viewed only once i n order to maintain the c o n f i d e n t i a l i t y of the student (this was important to the "volunteering" measure of support). The videotape excerpts were said to have been taken from the assessment part of the interview i n which the counselor asked the c l i e n t some general questions about his or her current condition. Subjects were then asked to complete Davis 7 (1980) Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI) as an "aid i n the int e r p r e t a t i o n " of t h e i r responses. The IRI was used to assess d i s p o s i t i o n a l l e v e l s of empathic concern, personal d i s t r e s s , and perspective taking. After completion of the IRI participants were escorted to one of four i n d i v i d u a l rooms equipped with a t e l e v i s i o n monitor and video cassette recorder, and were given a short verbal description of "Chris", the man or woman portrayed on the videotape. In a l l conditions Chris was described as a UBC student who experienced the breakup of a serious two year r e l a t i o n s h i p approximately two months p r i o r to the counseling session. I t was further explained that Chris decided to go to 20 counseling because of changes that had occurred i n Chris' l i f e since the break-up. This explanation offered subjects minimal information regarding Chris' character and was expected to l i m i t any tendency to view Chris as c h r o n i c a l l y distressed, and thereby encouraged the b e l i e f that Chris' could, i n f a c t , be helped. Immediately following completion of the tape, subjects were asked to complete a variety of questionnaires assessing t h e i r reactions to Chris. A l l measures, unless otherwise s p e c i f i e d , were assessed on 7-point scales. Dependent Measures State Empathy Since previous work has sometimes examined empathy as a state, rather than t r a i t , predictor of help (e.g. Batson, et a l . , 1983) subjects' state l e v e l of empathy was assessed i n addition to the t r a i t measures. The measure also allowed for the s t a t i s t i c a l control of state empathic concern to t e s t the perspective taking prediction. Two questions, each, assessed i n d i v i d u a l s ' state l e v e l of empathic concern (concern and compassion for C h r i s ) , personal d i s t r e s s (upset and d i s t r e s s over Chris' s i t u a t i o n ) , and perspective taking (seeing things from Chris' perspective, or imagining him or herself i n Chris' place). Perceptions of the Coping Portrayal Two questions assessed subjects' perceptions of the amount of upset and emotion expressed by Chris i n the videotape. These items acted as a manipulation check of the emotionality of the coper. In addition, subjects completed measures regarding t h e i r perceptions of the coper, the manner i n which he or she was coping, and the problem he or she was experiencing. I t has been hypothesized that expressions of d i s t r e s s might influence each of these factors, either by h i g h l i g h t i n g the coper's s i t u a t i o n and need f o r support, by making the coper appear more or less a t t r a c t i v e , and/or making the coper appear less competent, or normal than someone displaying less emotion. Situation Subjects may respond to expressions of d i s t r e s s by a l t e r i n g t h e i r perceptions of the seriousness of an individual's problems, such that greater d i s t r e s s i s associated with more severe problems. Two questions assessed p a r t i c i p a n t s ' perceptions of the seriousness of Chris' problems: how serious they were, how d i f f i c u l t i t would be to cope with Chris' problems. One question assessed p a r t i c i p a n t s ' perceptions of how much support Chris needed. Attractiveness Subjects were asked to indicate how much they l i k e d the coper by responding to a 5-item l i k i n g scale. The items asked subjects how much they l i k e d the student, would want to meet the student, would want to get to know the student better, would l i k e to work with the student on a cooperative task, and whether or not subjects f e l t they could become good friends with the student. In addition, subjects were asked to rate Chris on a scale of 9 bipolar adjectives. T r a i t s include: pleasant, sincere, f r i e n d l y , appealing, competent, i n t e l l i g e n t , l i k e a b l e , responsible, and a t t r a c t i v e . As indicated by Coates et a l . (1979) expressed d i s t r e s s may influence l i k i n g and attractiveness ratings negatively, and thus may influence the decision to provide support. Appropriateness As suggested by Coates et a l . (1979), expressions of d i s t r e s s may a l t e r assessments of an ind i v i d u a l ' s adjustment. Therefore, perceptions of the appropriateness of Chris' coping s t y l e were measured by asking subjects two questions: how normal and how appropriate Chris' reactions are. General Supportive Intentions Support was measured i n three ways. The f i r s t of these assessed subjects' general intention to provide support. S p e c i f i c a l l y , participants were asked: how supportive they think they would be of Chris; how much of t h e i r time they would be w i l l i n g to use i n helping Chris; how f a r out of t h e i r way they would go to help Chris; and, how important i t would be to them to help Chris. Hypothetical Support Subjects then completed the Supportive Actions Scale (SAS; Trobst, C o l l i n s , & Embree, 1991) a questionnaire consisting of a l i s t of 31 p o t e n t i a l l y supportive behaviors. For each behavior participants are asked to indicate, (on a 7-point scale from " d e f i n i t e l y would not do t h i s " to " d e f i n i t e l y would do t h i s " ) the l i k e l i h o o d that they would provide the p a r t i c u l a r type of support, and how helpful they believed each action would be i f they were i n fact to perform i t (on a 7-point scale from " d e f i n i t e l y would not be h e l p f u l " to " d e f i n i t e l y would be h e l p f u l " ) . The scale consists of three r e l a t i v e l y independent subscales: encouraging/emotional support, d i r e c t i v e support, and avoidant/enabling support. The f i r s t of these has been found to be most highly related to what i s t y p i c a l l y thought of as "support", receiving the highest ratings of helpfulness, and c o r r e l a t i n g more strongly with other measures of support than the d i r e c t i v e or avoidant subscales. Behavioral Intent Upon completion of the questionnaire packet an experimenter, b l i n d to experimental condition, entered the room with a "volunteer recruitment card" and said: The experiment part of the study i s over now. However, since our r e a l goal i s to t r y to help students who are having d i f f i c u l t i e s coping we are also using t h i s as an opportunity to r e c r u i t volunteers who would be interested i n working with the student they have seen i n the videotape. What I have here i s a l i s t of d i f f e r e n t a c t i v i t i e s people can volunteer f o r , and we ask you to read over the l i s t , check o f f anything you might be interested i n , and provide us with your name and phone number as a volunteer we can contact to take part i n these a c t i v i t i e s . Of course you are under no obligation to volunteer, for whatever reason, and because we are t r y i n g to get people that would r e a l l y be available, i f you are unsure you can just leave the card blank. So, when you are done with the card please put i t i n t h i s envelope, seal i t , and give i t back to me. Participants were instructed to read the volunteer recruitment form c a r e f u l l y , and indicate the number of hours they would be w i l l i n g to volunteer to act as a peer counselor. In addition, the card informed subjects that i f they were unable to act as a peer counselor they could take part i n other "one-time only" a c t i v i t i e s , including giving t h e i r phone number to the student, meeting the student for lunch or coffee, or attending the Peer Counseling Centre party so that they could meet the student. In order to volunteer for these a c t i v i t i e s subjects were instructed to place a check mark next to each of three a c t i v i t i e s f or which they would be w i l l i n g to volunteer. Space was provided for volunteers to indicate t h e i r name and phone number. The t o t a l number of hours and a c t i v i t i e s each participant volunteered for served as the behavioral measure. To promote honesty i n responding, subjects were asked to place the volunteer recruitment card i n an envelope before turning i t i n . 25 Debriefing At the conclusion of the study, a l l subjects were f u l l y debriefed. I t was ensured that subjects understood the purpose of the study and the importance of such research f o r gaining an understanding of the determinants of s o c i a l support provision. Since the study r e l i e d on deception at some points, great care was taken to ensure that subjects understood the reason for using deception and f e l t comfortable about i t s use. S p e c i f i c a l l y , subjects were informed that actors were presented i n the videotape, and t h i s information was expected to diminish any concern or dis t r e s s experienced i n response to the coper. In addition, subjects were be made aware that while the information obtained was not, at present, being used f o r the development of a Peer Counseling Centre, i t would be made available for such use i f needed. Subjects were also informed that they would not, i n fa c t , be c a l l e d to volunteer as a peer counselor. A l l subjects were assured that t h e i r responses were quite normal and that f a i l u r e to provide support did not indicate anything bad or unusual about them. The participants were then allowed to ask any questions i n order to ensure f u l l understanding. Results Manipulation Check A manipulation check of coper d i s t r e s s was performed by conducting a t - t e s t using ratings of coper d i s t r e s s as the dependent variable, and di s t r e s s displayed i n the videotapes (high versus low) as the independent variable. Findings indicated that the manipulation of d i s t r e s s was successful, t (163) = 4.22, p. < .001. Preliminary Analyses  Support • Three d i f f e r e n t measures of support were used i n t h i s study. The four item general measure of supportive intentions (participants' perceptions of how important i t would be to them to help the coper, how much of t h e i r time they would be w i l l i n g to use i n helping the coper, how f a r out of t h e i r way they would go to help the coper, and how much support they f e l t they would provide) showed strong in t e r n a l consistency, 06= .88. The second measure used was the Supportive Actions Scale (Trobst, C o l l i n s , & Embree, 1991). Recall that the SAS includes an encouraging/emotional support subscale, a d i r e c t i v e support subscale, and an avoidant/enabling support subscale. R e l i a b i l i t y c o e f f i c i e n t s calculated for each of the three subscales indicated adequate in t e r n a l consistency for each ( i . e . encouraging/emotional support, OL = .87; d i r e c t i v e support, .60; and, avoidant/enabling support, 0(= .68). Calculations of subscale i n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s indicated that the three factors are r e l a t i v e l y independent (r's ranged from .24 to .31). These correlations are si m i l a r to those obtained i n scale development (Trobst, et a l . , 1991). Construct v a l i d i t y information i s provided by examining the mean helpfulness and p r o b a b i l i t y ratings for each subscale. The encouraging/emotional support behaviors were deemed h e l p f u l , with a mean ra t i n g of X = 5.31 on a 7-point scale (7=extremely h e l p f u l ) . While the items tapping d i r e c t i v e support (X = 4.05), and avoidant/enabling support (X = 3.58) were seen as neither h e l p f u l nor unhelpful. In addition, subjects indicated that they would be most l i k e l y to perform encouraging/emotional kinds of support (X = 5.44), followed by d i r e c t i v e support (X = 4.41), and avoidant/enabling support (X = 3.98). A l l mean differences between subscales were s i g n i f i c a n t at the .01 l e v e l . These data are also consistent with previous work (Trobst, et a l . , 1991), and suggest that encouraging/emotional support i s the best indicator of i n t e n t i o n a l l y supportive behavior. Commitment to act as a peer counselor to the coper comprised the t h i r d support measure. Participants were asked to indicate t h e i r willingness to volunteer either "0 hours/week", "1-3 hours/week", "4-10 hours/week", or "10-20 hours/week" of t h e i r time for the purpose of acting as a peer counselor to the coper they viewed i n the videotape. Individuals i n d i c a t i n g they would volunteer "0 hours" received a score of "0", "1-3 hours" received a score of "1", and "4-10 hours" received a score of "2". The mean score f o r hours committed was X = .39, with 110 subjects, or 67% of the sample, in d i c a t i n g that they would volunteer "0 hours", 45 subjects, or 27% of the sample, ind i c a t i n g they 28 would volunteer "1-3 hours", and 10 subjects, or 6% of the sample, in d i c a t i n g they would volunteer "4-10" hours. None of the participants indicated a willingness to volunteer 10-20 hours/week of t h e i r time to act as a peer counselor. In addition, participants could volunteer to help the coper by agreeing to attend a "peer counseling party" where they could meet and t a l k to the coper (26 subjects, or 16% of the sample, volunteered), agreeing to meet the coper for lunch or coffee (28 subjects, or 17% of the sample volunteered), or by allowing the experimenter to give the participant's phone number to the coper (43 subjects, or 26% of the sample volunteered). Participants received a score of "1" f o r each a c t i v i t y they agreed to take part i n . The c o r r e l a t i o n between commitment of hours and the summed score of commitment to take part i n the three a c t i v i t i e s was r (162) = .50. Therefore, scores obtained for the number of hours volunteered and the number of a c t i v i t i e s agreed to were summed for each participant, creating a measure of o v e r a l l commitment to act as a peer counselor to the coper. Empathy A set of i n i t i a l analyses were also conducted examining the i n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s of the state and t r a i t empathy subscales. With regard to the t r a i t subscales, perspective taking was s i g n i f i c a n t l y correlated with empathic concern, r (162) = .40, E < .001, however, the other dimensions were largely independent (r's ranging from .03 to -.02). These 29 findings are s i m i l a r to those obtained by Davis (1983). Examination of the correlations between the state empathy subscales, on the other hand, indicated that the 3 subscales were a l l moderately in t e r c o r r e l a t e d (r's ranged from .38 -.55). In addition, while state empathic concern scores and state perspective taking scores correlated more highly with t h e i r corresponding t r a i t measure than with the other t r a i t subscales, state personal d i s t r e s s correlated most highly with t r a i t empathic concern (r (162) = .38, p_ < .001) and equally with t r a i t personal d i s t r e s s and t r a i t perspective taking (r (162) = .20, p_ < .005). Given t h i s finding, and the high inter-item c o r r e l a t i o n s , a l l of the state items were summed to create a general measure of state empathic emotion. Main Hypotheses  Provider Empathy Provider empathy was predicted to have a s i g n i f i c a n t impact on supportiveness. S p e c i f i c a l l y , i t was hypothesized that i n d i v i d u a l s high i n d i s p o s i t i o n a l empathic concern would indicate greater supportive intentions, endorse more encouraging/emotional supportive actions, and would be more l i k e l y to commit to acting as a peer counselor to the coper than indiv i d u a l s low i n d i s p o s i t i o n a l empathic concern. This hypothesis was confirmed i n regard to both the combined measure of state empathic emotion and the t r a i t measure of empathic concern. 30 Insert Table 1 about here As may be seen i n Table 1, across both of these empathy measures the highest c o r r e l a t i o n was obtained with ratings of general supportive intentions, followed by correlations with encouraging/emotional supportive actions, and the behavioral measure of commitment to act as a peer counselor. These findings indicate that individuals high i n d i s p o s i t i o n a l empathic concern, as well as those experiencing a large amount of state empathic emotion are more l i k e l y to indicate a general intention to be supportive, indicate a greater willingness to provide encouraging/emotional support, and are more l i k e l y to commit to acting as a peer counselor than individuals low i n d i s p o s i t i o n a l empathic concern, or those experiencing low lev e l s of state empathic emotion. No predictions were made regarding the association between empathic concern and tendency to o f f e r d i r e c t i v e or avoidant/enabling types of support, and indeed, no association was found between either the d i s p o s i t i o n a l or state measures and scores on the d i r e c t i v e support or avoidant/enabling support subscales. Perspective taking was hypothesized to be associated with support provision, and as Table 1 indicates, i t was s i g n i f i c a n t l y correlated with the general support measure, the encouraging/emotional support subscale, and commitment to act as a peer counselor. However i t was expected that the e f f e c t s of perspective taking would be limited to i t s a b i l i t y to increase feelings of empathic emotion. Therefore, any r e l a t i o n between t r a i t perspective taking and the support variables would be eliminated when s t a t i s t i c a l l y c o n t r o l l i n g for the e f f e c t of state empathic emotion. To te s t t h i s prediction a series of stepwise multiple regressions were conducted using each of the three support variable as the dependent variables, and entering the combined measure of state empathic emotion at the f i r s t step and t r a i t perspective taking scores at the second step. Results strongly supported these predictions, i n d i c a t i n g that perspective taking did not s i g n i f i c a n t l y predict general supportive intentions ( r = .02, ns.), encouraging/emotional supportive actions ( r = .02, ns.), or commitment to act as a peer counsellor ( r = .03, ns), over and above the e f f e c t of state empathic emotion. The t r a i t measure of personal d i s t r e s s was hypothesized to be negatively or unrelated to supportiveness. Results were mixed, in d i c a t i n g that personal d i s t r e s s was unrelated to general supportive intentions (r (162) = .02, ns.) and encouraging/emotional supportive actions (r (162) = .06, ns.) and was somewhat negatively associated with commitment to act as a peer counselor, r (162) = -.13, p_ = .05. Interestingly, personal d i s t r e s s was found to have a marginal p o s i t i v e association with d i r e c t i v e support, r 32 (162) = .13, p = .06, and a s i g n i f i c a n t p o s i t i v e association with avoidant/enabling support, r (162) = .22, p < .005. These findings seem to suggest that while personal d i s t r e s s does not influence p o s i t i v e support provision, i t may be associated with more negative kinds of behavior, and with f a i l u r e to provide support. Provider Gender I t was hypothesized that provider gender would influence willingness to provide support. S p e c i f i c a l l y , female participants were expected to indicate greater supportive intentions, endorse more encouraging/emotional supportive actions, and indicate a greater willingness to act as a peer counselor to the coper than male participants. In order to t e s t these predictions a series of t - t e s t s were conducted using the support measures as dependent variables, and provider gender as the independent variable. Results Strongly supported these predictions. Women expressed greater supportive intentions (X = 20.45) than men (X = 18.79), t (163) = 2.61, p_ < .01, endorsed more encouraging/emotional supportive actions (X = 96.74) than men (X = 88.35), t (163) = 4.24, p. < .001 and were more l i k e l y (X = 1.18) than men (X = .78) to volunteer to act as a peer counselor, t (163) = 1.98, p < .05. No predictions were made regarding provider gender differences i n willingness to provide d i r e c t i v e or avoidant/enabling kinds of support, and none were found. Next, the degree to which the gender/support r e l a t i o n may be attributed to gender differences i n empathy was examined. I t was hypothesized that one possible explanation for gender differences i n supportiveness may l i e i n that women have t y p i c a l l y been found to experience greater feelings of empathic emotion than men. Gender differences i n empathy were therefore examined by conducting t - t e s t s using each of the empathy measures as dependent variables and provider gender as the independent variable. Results indicated s i g n i f i c a n t gender differences on the variables of t r a i t empathic concern, t (163) = 2.80, p. < .01, and t r a i t personal d i s t r e s s , t (163) = 2.39, p < .05. As predicted, and consistent with findings i n the l i t e r a t u r e , women tended to obtain higher empathy scores across a l l of the empathy measures, with the exception that no gender difference was found on the t r a i t perspective taking subscale. Thus, the gender differences i n supportiveness i d e n t i f i e d may be attributable to male/female differences i n t r a i t empathic concern, the only empathy subtype associated with both support and gender i n t h i s study. To t e s t t h i s , the e a r l i e r gender analyses were conducted a second time as a series of ANCOVAs using the support variables as dependent variables, provider gender as the independent variable, and t r a i t empathic concern as the covariate. To the extent that the gender/support r e l a t i o n i s accounted for by gender differences i n empathic concern, tests f o r s i g n i f i c a n c e on these variables should be greatly reduced i n sig n i f i c a n c e , or become non-significant, when the ef f e c t of empathic concern i s controlled. P a r t i a l support was found f o r these predictions. Controlling for empathic concern eliminated gender differences obtained on the variables of general supportive intentions, F (1, 162) = 1.94, ns., and on the behavioral measure, F (1, 162) = 2.18, ns., and su b s t a n t i a l l y reduced gender differences on the encouraging/emotional subscale, F (1, 162) = 10.74, p < .001 (F = 17.98 p r i o r to addition of covariate). Thus, gender differences i n t r a i t empathic concern appear to account for a s i g n i f i c a n t portion of the tendency for women to provide more support than men, accounting for differences obtained i n supportive intentions and commitment to act as a peer counselor, and strongly influencing the tendency for women to indicate a greater l i k e l i h o o d of providing encouraging/emotional support than men. However, some gender differences i n supportive actions appear independent of empathy e f f e c t s . Recipient Gender Based on the findings of past research i t was hypothesized that female copers would be the rec i p i e n t s of more support than male copers. A series of t- t e s t s using gender of re c i p i e n t as the independent variable and the various support measures as the dependent variables yielded no support for t h i s prediction. No differences were found i n general supportive intention, t (163) = 1.46, ns.; willingness to provide encouraging/emotional support, t (163) = 1.09, ns; d i r e c t i v e support, t (163) = 1.22, ns; or avoidant/enabling support, t (163) = .42, ns. A marginal main e f f e c t supported the predicted r e l a t i o n for the behavioral measure. Participants were somewhat more l i k e l y to commit to acting as a peer counselor to female copers (X = 1.16) than to male copers (X = .80), t (163) = 1.73, p = .09. Recipient's Expressed Distress Opposing predictions were made regarding the e f f e c t of coper d i s t r e s s on supportiveness and coper evaluations. On the one hand, i t was suggested that d i s t r e s s may increase negative evaluations of the coper (attractiveness and l i k i n g of the coper) and create the impression that the coper's reaction i s inappropriate or abnormal. Thus, individuals may indicate a decreased willingness to provide support to these copers. On the other hand, witnessing an individual's d i s t r e s s might increase perceptions of need for support (and seriousness of the problem) and subsequently increase willingness to provide support. Either tendency was expected to be enhanced i n the case of male copers, and a three-way int e r a c t i o n with provider gender was also expected. To t e s t these hypotheses, a three-way ANOVA was conducted using the support measures as dependent variables, and emotionality of the videotapes, provider gender, and rec i p i e n t gender as the independent variables. A marginal main e f f e c t of emotionality of the coper was obtained on the 36 variable of general supportive intention, F (1, 157) = 3.66, p = .06, with participants i n d i c a t i n g greater intention to support high emotion copers than low emotion copers. This tendency was s i g n i f i c a n t with regard to the encouraging/emotional subscale, F (1, 157) = 6.10, p. < .05, in d i c a t i n g that participants would be more l i k e l y to provide encouraging/emotional support to high than to low emotion copers. However, no main e f f e c t was obtained on the behavioral support measure, or on the d i r e c t i v e or avoidant/enabling support subscales. Overall, d i s t r e s s appeared to have a p o s i t i v e , rather than negative influence on support. However, the e f f e c t was li m i t e d to supportive intentions and encouraging/emotional support; behaviorally equal amounts of support were offered to both the high and low d i s t r e s s copers. The predicted r e c i p i e n t gender by d i s t r e s s interaction e f f e c t was marginal for the variable of supportive intention, F (1, 157) = 2.78, p = .10. The trend was for participants to indicate greater supportive intentions i n response to high d i s t r e s s male copers r e l a t i v e to low d i s t r e s s male copers, whereas l e v e l of d i s t r e s s did not a f f e c t supportive intentions i n response to female copers. The two-way int e r a c t i o n f a i l e d to approach sig n i f i c a n c e for any of the other support measures. Thus, there was l i t t l e support for the prediction that r e c i p i e n t gender interacts with d i s t r e s s to influence support. The predicted three-way int e r a c t i o n with provider gender was not s i g n i f i c a n t for any 37 of the support measures, lending no support for t h i s r e l a t i o n . The r e l a t i o n s between expressed emotion and items assessing perceptions of the coper, the appropriateness of coping, and evaluations of the problem were then examined. A series of three-way ANOVAs using these measures as dependent variables and coper d i s t r e s s , provider gender and r e c i p i e n t gender as independent variables indicated a s i g n i f i c a n t main e f f e c t of d i s t r e s s only on the variables of l i k i n g f o r the coper [F (1, 155) = 7.03, p. < .01, with participants i n d i c a t i n g greater l i k i n g for high emotion than for low emotion copers], and ratings of need for support, [F (1, 156) = 4.42, p < .05], with high emotion copers seen as needing more support than low emotion copers. I t was expected that any tendency to a l t e r perceptions of coping, the coper, or coper need for support, would be enhanced i n the case of male copers. Some minimal support was obtained for t h i s prediction. A marginal two-way inte r a c t i o n between r e c i p i e n t gender and coper emotion was obtained on the variable of need for support, F (1, 156) = 3.22, E = .08. Follow-up simple comparisons indicated that participants perceived high emotion copers as needing more support only when the coper was male, t (80) = 2.61, E < .05. No differences were found i n perceived need for support with regard to high and low emotion female copers (t (81) = .23, ns.). There were no two-way int e r a c t i o n e f f e c t s on any of the other dependent variables. 38 Last, no support was obtained for the predicted three-way provider gender, by r e c i p i e n t gender, by coper emotion in t e r a c t i o n for any of these evaluation measures. Overall, these patterns are consistent with findings using the support measures as dependent variables. I t appears that d i s t r e s s may influence l i k i n g f or the coper and perceptions of need and thus may increase support. Moreover, minimal evidence suggests that d i s t r e s s may operate to a l t e r perceptions and subsequent support provision, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the case of male copers. Model Testing In order to simplify and integrate the various predictions and findings a path model was constructed based on the o r i g i n a l hypotheses, and some possible mediators suggested by the e a r l i e r r e s u l t s . In order to simplify the model, variables measuring s i m i l a r constructs were combined. The variables of need for support (1 item), and seriousness of the coper's problem (2 items) were combined to create a category of problem evaluation. Cronbach's alpha for t h i s variable was 0C= .52. An evaluation of the coping portrayal category was created by combining ratings of normalcy and appropriateness of the portrayal (2 items), and ratings of how admirably the student was coping (1 item), obtaining a Cronbach's of 06 = .54. Evaluation of the coper was assessed by combining ratings obtained on the 5-item l i k i n g scale with scores on the 9-item bipolar measure of attractiveness. Internal consistency was high for t h i s measure,Ol_= .89. Last, an o v e r a l l supportiveness measure was created by summing pa r t i c i p a n t s ' supportive intention, behavioral commitment, and scores on the encouraging/emotional subscale of the SAS. Again, i n t e r n a l consistency was high for t h i s measure, .90. A v i s u a l representation of the model i s depicted i n Figure 1. Insert Figure 1 about here The model was tested through a series of multiple regression analyses, entering the variable to be predicted as the dependent variable, and entering the predictor variables, simultaneously, at step one. The model was f i r s t tested using the dichotomous manipulation of r e c i p i e n t emotion ( i . e . high and low) as a variable. However, t h i s variable f a i l e d to predict any of the other variables i n the model. Because p a r t i c i p a n t s ' mean ratings of coper d i s t r e s s were quite high i n regard to both the high and low emotion videotapes (X = 11.71 f o r high and X = 10.90 for low, out of a possible high score of 14), the model was retested using the more se n s i t i v e , continuous, measure of p a r t i c i p a n t s ' ratings of coper d i s t r e s s as the variable of coper emotion. The r e s u l t s are depicted i n Figure 2. 40 Insert Figure 2 about here In general support was found for the model, although some of the paths added as possible mediators were not s i g n i f i c a n t . However, no support was found for a few of the predictions. Dispositional empathic concern was not found to be associated with either evaluations of the coping portrayal, or with evaluations of problem severity. Empathic concern was only found to be related to state empathic emotion, which, i n turn, was found to a f f e c t evaluations of the coping portrayal, and evaluations of problem severity. This i s s i m i l a r to the findings regarding perspective taking e f f e c t s . I t was also predicted that coper d i s t r e s s would lead to a heightened experience of empathic emotion among part i c i p a n t s . However, no association was found between ratings of coper d i s t r e s s and state empathic emotion. Instead, t h i s variable worked through evaluations of the coper, the coper's problem, and how i t was being handled. Interestingly, the l a t t e r of these l i n k s did not show the predicted r e l a t i o n to support. Evaluations of the coping portrayal and supportiveness were unrelated. Discussion Research i n the area of s o c i a l support has focused primarily on the effectiveness of support i n a l l e v i a t i n g the stress of negative l i f e events (e.g. Cohen & W i l l s , 1985), and on how received support i s perceived by r e c i p i e n t s (Dakof & Taylor, 1990; Lehman, E l l a r d , & Wortman, 1986). L i t t l e e f f o r t has been directed toward examination of the importance of the provider i n determining support provision, or which c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of a coper are l i k e l y to e l i c i t supportiveness i n others. Knowledge regarding the determinants of support provision may shed some l i g h t on why some copers f i n d themselves surrounded by supportive others i n times of need, while others are l e f t alone to deal with t h e i r d i f f i c u l t i e s . Gathering information of t h i s kind may, i n turn, be useful i n attempting to increase the support available to individuals i n need. The present study investigated the r o l e of several variables l i k e l y to be important i n determining reactions to copers and the amount and kinds of support proffered. Strong support was obtained f o r most predictions. Empathy has received extensive research attention as a determinant of prosocial behavior directed toward strangers i n emergency s i t u a t i o n s . The present study provides evidence f o r a strong association between empathy and support provision. Both state measures of empathic emotion and t r a i t measures of empathic concern and perspective taking were important predictors of supportiveness. The strength of the association, however, varied with the measure of supportiveness used. Empathic emotion was found to be strongly associated with general intentions to provide support, and with hypothetical provision of encouraging/emotional support behaviors. I t appears that indiv i d u a l s who are able to experience concern for the pl i g h t of another f e e l more motivated to come to the aid of the coper, and hence, intentions to provide support are enhanced. However, empathy was only moderately associated with commitment to act as a peer counselor. Presumably other factors exert an influence over supportiveness at the behavioral l e v e l . Perhaps individuals with a predisposition to empathic responding already devote much of t h e i r time to helping distressed individuals i n t h e i r network, and therefore were prevented from peer volunteering due to time and energy constraints. A l t e r n a t i v e l y , the differences i n supportive intentions evidenced between indivi d u a l s high and low i n empathy may have been muted at the behavioral l e v e l by feelings of discomfort and incompetence. Participants may have f e l t uncomfortable at the prospect of volunteering to o f f e r support to a stranger, and these feelings and doubts may have prevented some of these individuals from following through on t h e i r supportive intentions with a behavioral commitment. If t h i s were the case one would expect to f i n d more cle a r behavioral differences between high and low empathy individ u a l s when providing'support to a frie n d , rather than a stranger, as was examined i n t h i s study. In the instance of support provision to a f r i e n d i t i s l i k e l y that feelings of discomfort and incompetence would be less of a b a r r i e r than i n the case of support provision to a stranger. In order to examine t h i s suggestion empirically, future researchers could examine support provision patterns of high and low empathy individuals when the re c i p i e n t i s a fri e n d , rather than a stranger. Both perspective taking and empathic concern are apparently associated with supportiveness, through t h e i r a b i l i t y to increase s i t u a t i o n a l feelings of empathic emotion. Both variables f a i l e d to produce an e f f e c t on support when state empathy was controlled. A c h a r a c t e r i s t i c tendency toward empathy may lead to an increase i n feelings of concern f o r s p e c i f i c victims. I t appears that t h i s heightened f e e l i n g of s i t u a t i o n a l concern accounts for the r e l a t i o n between t r a i t empathy and supportiveness. This may be due to considerable overlap between the state and t r a i t measures, rather than a true process analysis. Nonetheless, i t may suggest strong support for empathy as a v a l i d construct influencing prosocial behavior, rather than a "zero-variable" (Wicklund, 1990). F i n a l l y , t r a i t personal d i s t r e s s was found to be unrelated to attitudes toward support provision, but showed a r e l a t i o n to measures more strongly i n d i c a t i v e of behavior. Findings indicated that high and low personal d i s t r e s s ind i v i d u a l s do not d i f f e r i n t h e i r supportive intentions, or i n hypothetical provision of encouraging/emotional supportive behaviors. I t seems that the amount of s e l f -focused d i s t r e s s one experiences when confronted with an 44 i n d i v i d u a l i n need has no e f f e c t on how much support one intends to provide. However, when faced with a coper i n need high personal d i s t r e s s individuals are less l i k e l y than low personal d i s t r e s s i n d i v i d u a l s to volunteer to have contact with t h i s person, presumably because to do so would be too upsetting. This i s consistent with the finding that indiv i d u a l s high i n personal d i s t r e s s indicated that they were more l i k e l y than low d i s t r e s s individuals to respond to a coper i n an avoidant/enabling fashion, apparently as a r e s u l t of t h e i r feelings of d i s t r e s s . Provider gender was also hypothesized as an important determinant of support provision, and was expected to operate through gender r o l e s , gender differences i n empathy, or both. As expected, women indicated greater supportive intentions and behaviors than men. Also as expected, a s i g n i f i c a n t portion of t h i s tendency was att r i b u t a b l e to gender differences i n empathic emotion. Cont r o l l i n g for empathic emotion eliminated gender differences on the variables of supportive intentions and peer volunteering commitment, suggesting that while gender roles undoubtedly exert an influence i n determining support provision, increases i n the emotional response of males to the p l i g h t of an unfortunate other would presumably lessen the present gap between male and female supportiveness. However, while c o n t r o l l i n g f o r gender differences i n empathic emotion reduced the strength of gender differences i n the provision of encouraging/emotional support, a s i g n i f i c a n t gender e f f e c t remained. Therefore, i t appears that gender differences i n the provision of encouraging/emotional support may be c l o s e l y t i e d to gender role s . Women have been found to have greater emotional involvement than men i n the l i v e s of those around them (Kessler & McLeod, 1984), and hence, are more l i k e l y than men to provide f o r the emotional needs of others. While one might expect that gender roles would also influence supportiveness such that a gender difference would remain with regard to the behavioral measure a f t e r c o n t r o l l i n g f o r gender differences i n empathy, the behavioral measure used i n t h i s study did not tap the emotional support domain. Instead, the behaviors required i n t h i s measure were less strongly associated with gender roles ( i . e . meet the coper f o r lunch or at a party, t a l k to the coper by phone, or volunteer to act as a peer counselor). Agreement to p a r t i c i p a t e i n any of these a c t i v i t i e s did not necessarily require that emotional support be offered. While some participants may have intended to provide such emotional support when volunteering, indi v i d u a l s could have volunteered without ever intending to provide such assistance. Recipient d i s t r e s s was found to a f f e c t support provision by increasing supportive intentions and hypothetical provision of encouraging/emotional supportive actions. I t i s unclear, however, how t h i s variable operates. Participants expressed greater l i k i n g for the high d i s t r e s s copers, but i n general d i s t r e s s did not influence ratings of attractiveness. The tendency for high d i s t r e s s copers to receive more support than low di s t r e s s copers may, i n part, be explained by the finding that heightened expressions of d i s t r e s s serve as a signal to potential providers that greater support i s needed. This e f f e c t , however, appears to hold only i n the case of male copers. Perceptions of a male coper's need increased when the male was highly emotional, and marginally increased support to him on one measure. Perceptions of a female coper's need remained constant across the high and low emotion coping portrayals, as did the support she was provided. I t appears that individuals faced with an emotional male perceive the role-inconsistent expression of di s t r e s s as a signal that a great deal of support i s needed, and hence, intention to provide support to emotional males i s enhanced. Whether or not d i s t r e s s a f f e c t s actual supportive behavior also remains unclear. While coper d i s t r e s s marginally affected in d i v i d u a l s supportive intentions, i t f a i l e d to exert an e f f e c t on t h e i r behaviors. This may be due to the r e l a t i v e i n s e n s i t i v i t y of the behavioral measure of support (volunteering), combined with the high lev e l s of dis t r e s s displayed i n both experimental conditions of emotion. The findings using d i s t r e s s ratings as an i n t e r v a l measure shed l i g h t on t h i s issue. When t h i s continuous variable i s used to predict evaluations of the coping episode and subsequent general support, d i s t r e s s does appear to be of some t h e o r e t i c a l import. Distress affected evaluations of the coper, h i s or her behavior, and of the coper's need for assistance. Coper and problem evaluations, i n turn, predicted support. The findings regarding evaluations of the coping portrayal are consistent with previous findings of Coates et a l . (1979), and S i l v e r et a l . (1990), i n d i c a t i n g that highly distressed copers are viewed as less normal and more maladjusted than less distressed copers. However, while S i l v e r et a l . (1990) and Coates et a l . (1979) found that high d i s t r e s s copers were rated as less l i k e a b l e and a t t r a c t i v e than low d i s t r e s s copers, the opposite r e s u l t s were obtained i n t h i s study. As noted e a r l i e r , however, manipulation of d i s t r e s s i n both the Coates et a l . (1979), and S i l v e r et a l . (1990) studies confounded expressions of a f f e c t (negative and positive) and outlook (pessimistic and o p t i m i s t i c ) , such that "poor copers" not only expressed more negative a f f e c t , but were also more pessimistic regarding t h e i r circumstances than "good copers". Therefore, given the findings of the present study i t appears that expressions of negative a f f e c t may i n f a c t enhance support provision, and that the negative e f f e c t s of "poor coping" as examined i n Coates et a l . (1979) and S i l v e r et a l . (1990), may be a t t r i b u t a b l e to the pessimism expressed by these ind i v i d u a l s , rather than the negative a f f e c t per se. 48 The path analytic approach allowed f o r s i m p l i f i c a t i o n and integration of findings by using these evaluative measures to explain the process by which gender, empathy, and d i s t r e s s might influence support. Perhaps the most sur p r i s i n g revelation of these analyses was the f a i l u r e to f i n d a r e l a t i o n between evaluations of an individual's coping strategy and support provision. High d i s t r e s s coping strategies were deemed more abnormal and inappropriate than low d i s t r e s s strategies, however, these evaluations f a i l e d to influence supportiveness. Perhaps evaluations of the coping strategy influence support only i n d i r e c t l y by a f f e c t i n g evaluations of the coper, which i n turn influences supportiveness. However, t h i s finding could also r e f l e c t a problem of m u l t i c o l l i n e a r i t y within the model. A l l of the variables i n the model were highly correlated, and path values are thus l i k e l y to be r e l a t i v e l y unstable. The m u l t i c o l l i n e a r i t y of the model necessitates caution i n i n t e r p r e t i n g any of the path associations. In order to gain confidence i n these r e s u l t s i t i s important that a s i m i l a r model be tested i n future studies, employing d i f f e r e n t measures of the variables to determine the consistency with which these path values are obtained. Conclusion The present data provide important insights into the determinants of supportiveness, and provide information which may be useful i n attempts to enhance the support available to i n d i v i d u a l s i n need. Instructions to potential caregivers ( i . e . the spouses and family members of victimized individuals) to take the perspective of the coper, and thereby increase feelings of empathic emotion i n response to the coper, may serve to increase the supportiveness of both male and female providers a l i k e . In addition, copers may benefit from i n s t r u c t i o n to express t h e i r d i s t r e s s , as to do so appears to increase l i k i n g for the coper as well as acting as a signal to potential caregivers that support i s needed. However, there i s l i k e l y to be a l i m i t beyond which excessive emotionality, or ongoing expressions of negative emotion, may a c t u a l l y be detrimental to attempts to receive support. I t could be that at extreme l e v e l s expression of d i s t r e s s leads to feelings of personal d i s t r e s s i n potential caregivers, thereby leading to a decrease i n willingness to intera c t with the coper, as doing so would be too upsetting, and an increase i n the tendency to respond to the coper i n an avoidant/enabling fashion. Exactly what the optimal l e v e l of d i s t r e s s expression i s remains unclear, and i s l i k e l y to be somewhat dependent on such c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the p a r t i c u l a r caregiver as d i s p o s i t i o n a l tendency to experience empathy, p a r t i c u l a r l y personal d i s t r e s s . 50 References Aderman, D. & Berkowitz, L. (1970). Observational set, empathy, and helping. Journal of Personality and  Social Psychology, 14., 141-148. Archer, R.L., Diaz-Loving, R., Gollwitzer, P.M., Davis, M.H., Foushee, H.C. (1981). The r o l e of d i s p o s i t i o n a l empathy and s o c i a l evaluation i n the empathic mediation of helping. Journal of Personality and Social  Psychology. 40, 786-796. Batson, CD., Darley, J.M., & Coke, J.S. (1978). Altruism and human kindness: Internal and external determinants of helping behavior. In L. Pervin & M. Lewis (Eds.), Perspectives i n i n t e r a c t i o n a l psychology. New York: Plenum Press. Batson, CD., Duncan, B.D., Ackerman, P., Buckley, T., & Birch, K. (1981). Is empathic emotion a source of a l t r u i s t i c motivation? Journal of Personality and  Soc i a l Psychology, 40, 290-302. Batson, CD., O'Quin, K., Ful t z , J . , Vanderplas, M., & Isen, A.M. (1983). Influence of self-reported d i s t r e s s and empathy on e g o i s t i c versus a l t r u i s t i c motivation to help. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 45, 706-718. Bern, S.L. (1974). The measurement of psychological androgyny. Journal of Consulting and C l i n i c a l  Psychology. 42, 155-162. Bernard, J . (1981). The female world. New York: Macmillan. Bickman, L. (1974). Sex and helping behavior. Journal of  Social Psychology f 93, 43-53. Brehm, S.S., Powell, L.K., & Coke, J.S. (1984). The e f f e c t s of empathic instructions upon donating behavior: Sex differences i n young children. Sex Roles, 10, 405-416. Broverman, I.K., Vogel, S.R., Broverman, D.M., Clarkson,u F.E., & Rosenkrantz, P.S. (1972). Sex-role stereotypes: A current appraisal. Journal of Social  Issues, 28, 59-78. Burda, P.C J r . , Vaux, A., & S c h i l l , T. (1984). Social support resources: Variation across sex and sex-role. Personality and Social Psychology B u l l e t i n . 10, 119-126. 51 C i a l d i n i , R.B., Schaller, M., Houlihan, D., Arps, K., Fultz, J . , & Beaman, A. (1987). Empathy-based helping: Is i t s e l f l e s s l y or s e l f i s h l y motivated? Journal of  Personality and Social Psychology, 52, 749-758. Coates, D., Wortraan, C.B., & Abbey, A. (1979). Reactions to victims. In I.H. Frieze, D. Bar-Tal, and J.S. C a r r o l l (Eds.), New approaches to s o c i a l problems. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Cohen, S., & W i l l s , T.A. (1985). Stress, s o c i a l support, and the buffering hypothesis. Psychological B u l l e t i n . 98, 310-357. Coke, J.S., Batson, CD., & McDavis, K. (1978). Empathic mediation of helping: A two-stage model. Journal of  Personality and Social Psychology r 36, 752-766. Dakof, G.A., & Taylor, S.E. (1990). Victims' perceptions of s o c i a l support: What i s help f u l from whom? Journal of  Personality and Soc i a l Psychology. 58, 80-89. Davis, M.H. (1980). A multidimensional approach to ind i v i d u a l differences i n empathy. JSAS Catalog of  Selected Documents i n Psychology, 10, 85. Davis, M.H. (1983a). Measuring in d i v i d u a l differences i n empathy: Evidence for a multidimensional approach. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 44, 113-126. Davis, M.H. (1983b). The ef f e c t s of d i s p o s i t i o n a l empathy on emotional reactions and helping: A multidimensional approach. Journal of Personality. 51, 167-184. Davis, M.H. (1983c). Empathic concern and the muscular dystrophy telethon: Empathy as a multidimensional construct. Personality and Social Psychology B u l l e t i n , 9, 223-229. Day, A. (1985). Who cares? Demographic trends challenge family care for the e l d e r l y . Population Trends and  Public Policy. 9, 1-17. Dunkel-Schetter, C. (1984). Social support and cancer: Findings based on patient interviews and t h e i r implications. Journal of Social Issues. 40, 77-98. Dunkel-Schetter, C., & Skokan, L.A. (1990). Determinants of s o c i a l support provision i n personal re l a t i o n s h i p s . Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. 7, 437-450. 52 Dunkel-Schetter, C , Folkman, S., & Lazarus, R.S. (1987). Correlates of s o c i a l support receipt. Journal of  Personality and Social Psychology, 53, 71-80. Eagly, A.H., & Crowley, M. (1986). Gender and helping behavior: A meta-analytic review of the s o c i a l psychological l i t e r a t u r e . Psychological B u l l e t i n , 100, 283-308. Eisenberg, N., & M i l l e r , P.A. (1987). Relation of empathy to prosocial and related behaviors. Psychological  B u l l e t i n . 101. 91-119. Eisenberg, N. , M i l l e r , P.A., Schaller, M., Fabes, R.A., Fult z , J . , S h e l l , R., & Shea, C.L. (1989). The role of sympathy and a l t r u i s t i c personality t r a i t s i n helping: A reexamination. Journal of Personality. 57, 41-67. G r i f f i t h , J . (1985). Social support providers: Who are they? Where are they met? and the re l a t i o n s h i p of network c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s to psychological d i s t r e s s . Basic and Applied Social Psychology. 6, 41-60. Hobfoll, S.E., & Lerman, M. (1988). Personal relationships, personal a t t r i b u t e s , and stress resistance: Mother's reactions to t h e i r c h i l d ' s i l l n e s s . American Journal  of Community Psychology, 16., 565-589. Hobfoll, S.E., & Lerman, M. (1989). Predicting receipt of s o c i a l support: A longitudinal study of parents' reactions to t h e i r c h i l d ' s i l l n e s s . Health Psychology. 8, 61-77. Hoffman, M.L. (1977). Sex differences i n empathy and related behaviors. Psychological B u l l e t i n , 84, 712-722. House, J.S., Landis, K.R., & Umberson, D. (1988). Social relationships and health. Science, 241 f 540-545. Kessler, R.C., & McLeod, J.D. (1984). Social support and psychological d i s t r e s s i n community surveys. In S. Cohen and L. Syme (Eds.), Social support and health (pp. 219-240). New York: Academic Press. Lehman, D.R., E l l a r d , J.H., & Wortman, C.B. (1986). Social support for the bereaved: Recipients' and providers' perspectives on what i s h e l p f u l . Journal of Consulting  and C l i n i c a l Psychology, 54, 438-446. Liebhart, E.H. (1972). Empathy and emergency helping: The ef f e c t s of personality, self-concern, and acquaintance. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 8, 404-411. 53 Narus, L.R. J r . , & Fischer, J.L. (1982). Strong but not s i l e n t : A reexamination of expressivity i n the relationships of men. Sex Roles. 8, 159-168. Schaller, M., & C i a l d i n i , R.B. (1988). The economics of empathic helping: Support f o r a mood management motive. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 24, 163-181. Schroeder, D.A., Dovidio, J.F., Sibicky, M.E., Matthews, L.L., & Al l e n , J.L. (1988). Empathic concern and helping behavior: Egoism or altruism? Journal of  Experimental Social Psychology, 24., 333-353. Schultz, R., & Decker, S. (1985). Long-term adjustment to physical d i s a b i l i t y : The ro l e of s o c i a l support, perceived control, and self-blame. Journal of  Personality and Social Psychology, 48, 1162-1172. S i l v e r , R.C., Wortman, C.B., & Crofton, C. (1990). The ro l e of coping i n support provision: The s e l f -presentational dilemma of victims of l i f e c r i s e s . In I.G. Sarason, B.R. Sarason, & G.R. Pierce (Eds.), Social support: An i n t e r a c t i o n a l view (pp. 397-426). New York: Wiley. Toi, M. & Batson, CD. (1982). More evidence that empathy i s a source of a l t r u i s t i c motivation. Journal of  Personality and Social Psychology, 43, 281-292. Trobst, K.K., C o l l i n s , R.L., & Embree, J.M. (1991). Provider factors i n provision of support: Empathy, personal r e s p o n s i b i l i t y , and gender e f f e c t s . Unpublished Manuscript. Underwood, B., & Moore, B. (1982). Perspective-taking and altruism. Psychological B u l l e t i n , 91, 143-173. Vaux, A. (1986). Variations i n s o c i a l support associated with gender, e t h n i c i t y , and age. Journal of Social  Issues, 41 f 89-110. Wicklund, R.A. (1990). Zero-variable theories i n the analysis of s o c i a l phenomena. European Journal of  Personality, 4, 37-55. Zarbatany, L., Hartman, D.P., Gelfand, D.M., & Vinciguerra, P. (1985). Gender differences i n a l t r u i s t i c reputation: Are they a r t i f a c t u a l ? Deve1opmenta1  Psychology. 21, 97-101. Table 1 Intercorrelations between empathy and support measures EMPATHIC CONCERN PERSPECTIVE TAKING PERSONAL DISTRESS STATE EMPATHY GENERAL SUPPORT r = .51 p < .001 r = .33 E < .001 r = .02 E = .39 r = .55 E < .001 EMOTIONAL/ ENCOURAGING r = .46 p < .001 r = .29 E < .001 r = .06 E = -22 r = .40 E < .001 DIRECTIVE SUPPORT r = .03 p = . 35 r = .08 p = .17 r = .13 E = -06 r = .03 E = -34 AVOIDANT/ ENABLING r = .01 p = .47 r = -.12 E = .07 r = .22 E < -01 r = .03 E = .33 PEER VOLUNTEER r = .20 _ E < .01 r = .19 E < .01 r = -.13 E = -05 r = .23 E < .01 55 Figure Caption Figure 1. Predicted model of association between variables. Figure 1 GENDER TRAIT EMPATHIC CONCERN STATE EMPATHIC EMOTION COPER EMOTION EVALUATION OF COPING COPER EVALUATION SUPPORT PROBLEM EVALUATION L n ON 57 Figure Caption Figure 2. Obtained model of association between variables. Figure 2 .26 *** Values are beta weights. * p < .05 ** p < .01 *** p < .001 Publications Collins, R.L., & Trobst, K.K. (1991). Chronic self-esteem and reactions to social  comparison information under conditions of threat: It's who you are, not  who you're with. Manuscript in preparation. Collins, R.L., Trobst, K.K., & Embree, J.M. (1991). Social comparison through  social interaction: Processes and effects. Manuscript in preparation. Trobst, K.K., Collins, R.L., & Embree, J.M. (1991). Determinants of support  provision: Provider and recipient factors. Manuscript in preparation. Ellard, J.H., & Trobst, K.K. (1991). Belief in a just world and reactions to a cancer  victim: The role of blame and recovery. Manuscript in preparation. 

Cite

Citation Scheme:

        

Citations by CSL (citeproc-js)

Usage Statistics

Share

Embed

Customize your widget with the following options, then copy and paste the code below into the HTML of your page to embed this item in your website.
                        
                            <div id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidgetDisplay">
                            <script id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidget"
                            src="{[{embed.src}]}"
                            data-item="{[{embed.item}]}"
                            data-collection="{[{embed.collection}]}"
                            data-metadata="{[{embed.showMetadata}]}"
                            data-width="{[{embed.width}]}"
                            async >
                            </script>
                            </div>
                        
                    
IIIF logo Our image viewer uses the IIIF 2.0 standard. To load this item in other compatible viewers, use this url:
http://iiif.library.ubc.ca/presentation/dsp.831.1-0100518/manifest

Comment

Related Items