ERIC Number: ED285298
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
Coping Strategies and Adaptation of Mothers of Children with Handicapping Conditions.
Hooshyar, Nahid T.
Mothers' coping mechanisms and adaptations to having a handicapped child were analyzed through extensive structured interviews with mothers of eight preschool-aged Down syndrome children and a language impaired child. Three illustrative case studies are presented, and general conclusions are drawn. Mothers of Down syndrome children go through the initial stage of denial, disbelief, and grief upon learning that their newborn infant is not normal. But, in retrospect, they feel that the shock could have been less traumatic had physicians and hospital staff handled the situation more positively and with a greater store of information concerning community resources. Other factors contributing to positive coping on the part of new parents include extent of parental knowledge, a supportive social network of family and friends, and community resources. In general, mothers' adaptation to the child's handicapping condition depends on the past history of interaction between mother and child (before diagnosis as handicapped), mothers' reaction to the handicapping label, extent and quality of knowledge of intervention and rehabilitation programs, and the child's personal characteristics (e.g., physical appearance, level of responsiveness to stimulation). (JW)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at a Conference of the Institute for Child and Family (Lubbock, TX, January 22-24, 1986).