The Relationship of Parent Self-Focused Negative Attributions to Ratings of Parental Overprotection, Perceived Child Vulnerability, and Parenting Stress

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Abstract

The present study describes an examination of the relationship of parent self-focused negative attributions to specific parenting variables, namely parental overprotection, perceived child vulnerability, and parenting stress. Parents of children diagnosed with one of three chronic illnesses, Type 1 diabetes (DM1), asthma (AS), or cystic fibrosis (CF), completed self-report measures of attributions for illness-unrelated events, parental overprotection, perceived child vulnerability, and parenting stress. Results indicated that parent self-focused negative attributions were significantly associated with parenting stress among the combined and DM1-only samples. In addition, parent self-focused negative attributions were associated with perceived child vulnerability among the CF-only group, whereas self-focused negative attributions were not associated with any of the parenting variables within the AS-only group. The current results suggest that parent self-focused negative attributions may exert illness-specific influences on other cognitive processes (e.g., perceptions of child vulnerability, perceptions of stress), which have the potential to influence child adjustment outcomes.

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