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Child and family characteristics and adjustment in families of young children with autism

by Brown-Godsave, Deborah L.

Abstract (Summary)
To bmer understand the specific variables associateci with successful adaptationin families ofyoung chüh with autism, the present study examinai the perceptions of parents on several measures pertaining to the experiences ofparenting and fjuailv bctioning ushgthe ABCX mode1 as a general guihg fhmework Severity ofautism was the predictor variable, and social support and parental locus of controi were moderatingvariables. Coutrary to expectatioas, no support was found for the moderatmg role ofsocial support and loccs of conml for 50 mothers ofchildren with autism on the measures ofparenting stress, dyadic adjustmenî, fàmiIy relationships and fiimily social integration. Howewer, the more severe the aritism as reported by the mothers,the higher levels of parenting stress and lower levels offdy social integration reported. Also, a more extemal parental locus of control orientation was predictive ofhigher levels of parenting stress. Overall, mothers of chiIdren with autism were managing satisfàctorilyin their parenting roles and their families were generallywell adjusted. Mothers and Mers had similar perceptions on the parental locus of control scale, dyadic adjustment and the quality ofthe fdy environment. Mothers and fàthers scores were signincantly di6erent on the Parenthg Stress Index. Mothers reported higher stress in the areas ofrole restriction and relationshipwith spouse. The implications of the Gndings for prxtitioners were discusseà.
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Source Type:Master's Thesis

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Date of Publication:01/01/1997

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