Child Characteristics And Different Aspects Of Parent Responses

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Child characteristics. A common topic in FQOL studies, referred to as child characteristics, relates to minor or adult children in the context of parent responses; and explores the impact of different aspects of the individual with disabilities on the family. Studies on child characteristics have focused on severity and type of disability and behavioral considerations, and they have also included discussion about the impact of long-term residential placement, and factors related to typically occurring transitions. The literature examining child characteristics has indicated that the severity of a child’s disability may impact maternal satisfaction of FQOL (Wang, Turnbull et al., 2004). In addition, Hu et al. (2012) supported these findings, providing cultural context as a possible explanation. However, others cite possible alternatives, such as recency of diagnosis (Gardiner & Iarocci, 2012) and behavioral challenges, which correlate to lower ratings of emotional well-being and disability-related support from early childhood through the adult years (Davis & Gavidia-Payne, 2009; Wang, Turnbull, et al., 2004). These factors may be related to behavioral challenges, shown to impact FQOL for families of both children and adults with this diagnosis (Brown et al., 2006; Davis & Gavidia-Payne, 2009; Minnes, Woodford, & Passey, 2007; Walden, Pistrang, & Joyce, 2000; Wang, Turnbull, et al., 2004). These findings may be sources of important insight, but most of them also have the same limitations that are inherent in any empirical study involving responses to survey questions. Response bias distorts the responses given to surveys and can undermine validity and reliability (Furnham, 1986). For example, Wang, Turnbull, et al (2004) used... ... middle of paper ... ... al., 2009). Child transitions such as moving from preschool to formal schooling, or from high school to adult living, are a regular part of family life. However, families of children with disabilities may be at the highest risk during life cycle transitions. These transitions require flexibility to readjust to changing circumstances, and potentially necessitate additional supports to cope with increasing demands (Gardiner & Iarocci, 2012; Minnes et al., 2007). For example, parents have expressed concern and stress over lack of information regarding inclusion support at school when transitioning to public school programs from early childhood services (Davis & Gavidia-Payne, 2009). Additionally, parents of older children moving from high school to adult services, have shared worries about work, community living, and social opportunities (Kraemer & Blacher, 2001).
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