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Sense of Coherence, Parenting Attitudes and Stress among Mothers of Children with Autism in Hong Kong

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Background 

The moderating and mediating relationships among sense of coherence, parental attitudes and parenting stress for caregiving parents of children with autism were tested. Materials and Methods 

One hundred and fifty-seven mothers of children with autism recruited from representative community service centres in Hong Kong completed the Chinese versions of Sense of Coherence Scale (SOC), Confidence and Acceptance subscales of Parent-Attitude Survey Scales and Parenting Stress Index Short Form. Results 

Accounting for mothers’ demographic background, SOC showed a moderating effect with child's symptoms and parenting stress. Mothers with a strong SOC perceived lower stress than their counterparts even when their children presented with more severe autistic symptoms. Two proximal factors in parenting, parental confidence and acceptance of the child, were found to partially mediate SOC and stress. Conclusions 

The stress experience of mothers of children with autism is related strongly to a global sense of coherence as well as more specific parenting attitudes.
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Keywords: autism; parenting attitudes; sense of coherence; stress

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Psychology, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong 2: Department of Psychology, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA

Publication date: March 1, 2007

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