All change produces stress, even “good” changes such as marriage or vacations. Sometimes it is hard to perceive the stress of “good” changes but easy to understand the stress caused by negative changes such as job loss. Common stressors in a transition are fear and uncertainty.

For example, some of the fears a person may have about unemployment include fear of failure, the inability to manage debts, and the inability to learn new skills. The uncertainty of the job market may also be an issue. The familyʼs background and the individual personalities of its members will determine how they see the situation. The individualsʼ senses of compe- tency, self esteem, values, needs, and interest along with their health, past experience in handling stress, and financial and other resources will influence how the family views the situation. Some families will welcome the opportunity to make changes in their lives. Other families will be unable to act due to fear and uncertainty of the unknown. Their view of the situation may be keeping them from recognizing the resources available to them in the community and from relatives and friends.

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