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Am J Orthopsychiatry. 2004 Jan;74(1):14-25.

The effect of quality of the relationship between mothers and adult children with schizophrenia, autism, or down syndrome on maternal well-being: the mediating role of optimism.

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1
Waisman Center and School of Social Work, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53705, USA.

Abstract

This article investigates the effects of the quality of the relationship between maternal caregivers and their adult child with disabilities on maternal well-being and whether this effect is mediated by dispositional optimism. Mothers caring for an adult child with Down syndrome (n=126), schizophrenia (n=292), or autism (n=102) were surveyed. Mothers of adults with schizophrenia and autism had better psychological well-being when the mother/adult child relationship was positive, but this effect was mediated totally or partially by optimism. For all 3 groups, optimism was related to better mental and physical health. The findings highlight the importance of dispositional optimism, a psychological resource that has been virtually ignored in studies of family caregivers of adults with disabilities.

PMID:
14769105
PMCID:
PMC2396580
DOI:
10.1037/0002-9432.74.1.14
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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