Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Perceived Stress among Economically Deprived Women in Addis Ababa


  • Feyisa Saba
  • yemane Sisay


: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Perceived Stress, Social Support, Meaning in Life, Economically Deprived Women.


The study aimed to explore whether posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms,
perceived stress, social support, and sense of meaning in life are interrelated among
economically deprived adult women. A cross-sectional correlational design was used;
participants were selected through homogenous purposive sampling, and data were
collected from 118 women through a questionnaire administered as an interview.
Results indicated that 55.9% of the participants did not meet the PTSD criteria. In
contrast, 26.2% and 15.5% of the participants showed mild and moderate PTSD
symptoms, respectively, while 2.5% showed severe PTSD symptoms. Perceived stress
was positively related to PTSD (r = .475, p < .001), while it was negatively related
with perceived social support (r = -.409, p < .001). In addition, PTSD symptoms were
found to be significantly prominent among women who had experienced sexual
assault than those who had not (t(116) = 2.84, p = .005), as well as among women
who experienced physical assault than who had not (t(116) = 2.37, p = .019).
Moreover, perceived general health status significantly predicted PTSD (b = -2.79,
t(115) = -2.13, p < .05). In contrast, perceived social support and perceived general
health status significantly predicted perceived stress (b = -.16, t(115) = -4.78, p <
.001 and b = -1.4, t(115) = -2.72, p < .05 respectively). The research findings confirm
that PTSD symptoms and perceived stress have a positive association; stress is linked
with indicators of the sense of meaning in life; social support is a buffer for stress and
PTSD, and social support contributes to a higher meaning in life.