Child rearing practices: Child with chronic illness and well sibling

King, Ellen
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The purpose of this study was to identify and compare child-rearing practices of children with chronic illness as compared to their siblings and answer the following question: What are the differences in combined patterns of child-rearing when compared to child-rearing patterns of fathers and child-rearing patterns of mothers where there is one child in the family with chronic illness?

The sample was the available population of parents who had two children between the ages of 4 and 14, one of whom had a chronic illness and sought health care in a large, private family practice. Nineteen parent pairs were selected. Each parent was asked to fill out two Child-Rearing Practices Questionnaires (CRPQ). One questionnaire related to the child with chronic illness and one related to the sibling. The following four factors were used in the analysis: Factor I, use of punishment vs. reason; Factor II, promotion of independence vs. dependence; Factor III, levels of rules of behavior; and Factor IV, amount of spouse involvement. Factor VII was used to check motivational distortion.

A multiple analysis of variance (MANOVA) was used to test the hypothesis. There was no significant difference in child-rearing practices related to health status of the child. Interaction between sex of the parent and health status of the child produced no significant difference. There was a significant difference, p = .05, between mothers and fathers on Factor IV, amount of spouse involvement. Fathers saw mothers as more involved in child-rearing than mothers saw fathers. Factor I and Factor VII were inversely correlated in mothers of children with chronic illness. The mothers were more inclined to distort their answers when they used punishment.

Chronically ill children, Family relationships, Parent and child, Child rearing