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ERIC Number: EJ869977
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1750-9467
Coping, Distress, and Well-Being in Mothers of Children with Autism
Benson, Paul R.
Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, v4 n2 p217-228 Apr-Jun 2010
As is the case in stress research generally, studies examining the relationship between coping and mental health outcomes in parents of children with autism frequently classify parental coping methods as being either problem- or emotion-focused. We argue that this dichotomization of coping strategies oversimplifies the way parents respond to their child's autism. In the present study, the coping methods employed by 113 mothers of children with autism were investigated using the Brief COPE (Carver et al., 1989). Exploratory factor analysis of Brief COPE subscales identified four reliable coping dimensions: engagement coping, distraction coping, disengagement coping, and cognitive reframing coping. In addition, using multiple regression, we examined the relationship of coping strategies to negative and positive maternal outcomes (depression, anger, and well-being). In general, maternal use of avoidant coping (distraction and disengagement) was found to be associated with increased levels of maternal depression and anger, while use of cognitive reframing was associated with higher levels of maternal well-being. In several instances, child characteristics, particularly severity of child maladaptive behavior, moderated the effect of coping on maternal outcomes. Study findings are discussed in light of previous research in the area; in addition, study limitations and clinical implications are highlighted. (Contains 2 figures and 4 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A