Consistent stress profiles in mothers of children with autism

J Autism Dev Disord. 1992 Jun;22(2):205-16. doi: 10.1007/BF01058151.


The present study extends the area of research on stress in parents of autistic children. In this study we used the Questionnaire on Resources and Stress (Holroyd, 1987) to compare the stress profiles across mothers (a) who lived in different cultural and geographic environments; (b) who had children of different ages; and (c) who had children with different functioning levels. Results showed a characteristic profile that was highly consistent across each of these subgroups. Major differences from the normative data occurred on scales measuring stress associated with dependency and management, cognitive impairment, limits on family opportunity, and life-span care. Results suggest the importance of developing treatment programs aimed at reducing stress in specific areas in families with autistic children.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living / psychology
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Arousal*
  • Autistic Disorder / psychology*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Home Nursing / psychology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mother-Child Relations
  • Mothers / psychology*
  • Social Environment
  • Stress, Psychological / complications*