Parenting stress of mothers and fathers of young children with cognitive delays in Vietnam.J Intellect Disabil Res. 2006 Oct; 50(Pt 10):748-60.JI
This research examined the effects of child and family variables on stress experienced by mothers and fathers of young children with cognitive delays in Vietnam.
The mothers (n = 106) and fathers (n = 93) whose children (age range = 3-6 years) were identified as having cognitive delays participated in the interview survey. The survey consisted of a set of the standardized questionnaires that were translated into Vietnamese and assessed for the content validity in the Vietnamese context.
Mothers experienced more stress than fathers. Path analyses were conducted for mothers and fathers separately. Mothers with female children, those with children of lower intellectual functioning, and those whose husbands had health conditions experienced more stress than the other mothers. Fathers with lower economic status and a smaller social support network were more stressed than the other fathers. Both mothers and fathers were more stressed when they experienced stronger stigma, although the effects were not significant when other variables were considered together in path analyses.
The findings revealed traditional gender roles. Mothers were more affected by the child's characteristics and the spouse's functioning; they anticipated future problems related to the child's functioning more than fathers did. Fathers were more affected by concerns about the family's connection to the wider world such as economic issues and the social support network. Longitudinal studies of how social support and stigma affect families would be valuable.