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Parenting stress and external stressors as predictors of maternal ratings of child adjustment
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Women's and Children's Health, Pediatrics.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2013 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, ISSN 0036-5564, E-ISSN 1467-9450, Vol. 54, no 3, 213-221 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study sought to disentangle the effects of different kinds of stress on maternal ratings of child externalizing and internalizing problems, social inhibition, and social competence, with a primary focus on parenting stress. The relations were explored in a sample consisting of mothers of 436 children (Mage=7years) in Sweden. Half the sample had had early clinical contacts during infancy due to child regulation problems, and the rest were mothers without known such early contacts. Demographic factors, family stressors, and parenting stress were examined in stress adjustment models. Family stressors were clinical contact during infancy, current child and parent health problems, recent negative life events, and insufficient social support. Parenting stress as a mediator of the effect of other stressors on rated child adjustment was tested as was social support as a moderator of the effect of parenting stress on adjustment. The results showed that a higher parenting stress level was associated with maternal ratings of more externalizing and internalizing behaviors, more social inhibition, and lower social competence. Other family stressors and background variables were also found to be of importance, mainly for externalizing and internalizing problems and to some extent for social competence. Social inhibition had a unique relation to parenting stress only. Parenting stress mediated effects of other stressors in twelve models, whereas social support had no moderating effect on the link between parenting stress and child adjustment. Thus, parenting stress seems to be an important overarching construct. Clinical implications are proposed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 54, no 3, 213-221 p.
Keyword [en]
Parenting stress, family stressors, externalizing problems, internalizing problems, social inhibition and social competence
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-202365DOI: 10.1111/sjop.12045ISI: 000318441100005OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-202365DiVA: diva2:631955
Available from: 2013-06-24 Created: 2013-06-24 Last updated: 2013-06-24Bibliographically approved

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Östberg, MonicaHagekull, Berit
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