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This research was undertaken as part of a fourth year psychology project. A version of this paper was presented at the 2011 Asia Pacific Autism Conference.
Raising a child with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) can be exhausting, which has the potential to impact on parental health and wellbeing. The current study investigated the influence of maternal fatigue and coping on the relationship between children’s problematic behaviours and maternal stress for 65 mothers of young children (aged 2–5 years) with ASDs. Results showed that maternal fatigue but not maladaptive coping mediated the relationship between problematic child behaviours and maternal stress. These findings suggest child behaviour difficulties may contribute to parental fatigue, which in turn may influence use of ineffective coping strategies and increased stress. The significance of fatigue on maternal wellbeing was highlighted as an important area for consideration in families of children with an ASD.
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- Fatigue, Stress and Coping in Mothers of Children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Springer US