Navigation Links
Study details autism's heavy toll beyond childhood on marriages
Date:8/3/2010

MADISON The parents of grown children with autism are more likely to divorce than couples with typically developing children, according to new data from a large longitudinal study of families of adolescents and adults with autism.

The study, published in the August issue of the Journal of Family Psychology by researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Waisman Center, paints a new picture of the prospects of long-term marital success for parents raising a child with autism.

The study is the first to track marital history of parents of adult children with autism. It reveals that, in contrast to previous assumptions, parents do not have a greater risk of divorce when their son or daughter with autism is young. However, as the child with autism grows into adolescence and adulthood, parents are more likely to divorce than are parents of typically developing children. Although findings reveal diminished prospects for a lasting marriage for parents raising a child with autism, the majority of marriages in this study survived.

The study compared the marital fates of 391 couples the parents of adolescent and adult children with autism to a sample drawn from another large longitudinal study, the National Survey of Midlife in the United States (MIDUS). The goal of the study was to document the rate and timing of divorce of parents of children with autism, explains Sigan Hartley, a UW-Madison assistant professor of human development and family studies and lead author of the report.

The study revealed that the divorce rate for parents of children with autism mirrors the divorce rate of the parents of children without disabilities until the child reaches 8 years of age. After that, the divorce rate goes down for parents of children without disabilities but remains high for parents of children with autism.

"There seems to be a prolonged vulnerability for divorce in parents of children with autism," says Hartley. "Typically, if couples can survive the early child-rearing years, parenting demands decrease and there is often less strain on the marriage. However, parents of children with autism often continue to live with and experience high parenting demands into their child's adulthood, and thus marital strain may remain high in these later years."

Autism, also known as autism spectrum disorder or ASD, has symptoms that vary considerably in severity between individuals, but core characteristics of the disorder include difficulty establishing and maintaining social relationships, delayed communication skills, and repetitive motions such as rocking back and forth and hand flapping. Children with autism frequently require high levels of care and continue to live with parents as adults.

"There is a lifelong profile of challenging behaviors and symptoms associated with autism," Hartley notes. "Few developmental disabilities appear to be more taxing on parents and there is a great need for support services for families when the child is an adolescent and adult. Providing support for couples to help them work on their marriages is an obvious step. If we can get information and support to these families, we hope to be able to support lasting marriages."

The new study compares data from two large longitudinal studies, the Adolescents and Adults with Autism Study, directed by Marsha Mailick Seltzer, a UW-Madison professor of social work and director of the Waisman Center, and MIDUS, directed by UW-Madison psychology professor Carol Ryff. Both studies are funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sigan Hartley
hartley@waisman.wisc.edu
608-262-8860
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Despite Treatment, Employees with Depression Generate Higher Absentee Costs, According to Thomson Reuters Study
2. American Council on Exercise (ACE) Study Reveals Kettlebells Provide Powerful Workout in Short Amount of Time
3. TV drama can be more persuasive than news program, study finds
4. Study carried out into biological risks of eating reptiles
5. Neuroimaging study may pave way for effective Alzheimers treatments
6. Study finds racial gaps continue in heart disease awareness
7. Luth Researchs IndicatorEDG(TM) Study Finds Americans Hopes of Achieving Their Dreams Are Fading
8. First blinded study of venous insufficiency prevalence in MS shows promising results
9. Soothing infants with food focus of childhood obesity study
10. People with anxiety disorder less able to regulate response to negative emotions, study shows
11. American Heart Association Rapid Access Journal Report: Study Finds Racial Gaps Continue in Heart Disease Awareness, Low Knowledge of Heart Attack Warning Signs Among Women
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:9/21/2017)... ... 2017 , ... In addition to sticking with the new ... approach and use natural alternatives for all house cleaning products, disinfectants, respiratory relief, ... that, the new line of essential oils, are all 100% organic and natural. ...
(Date:9/21/2017)... WA (PRWEB) , ... September 21, 2017 , ... ... technology using Microscan’s LVS 7510 at the Global GS1 Healthcare Conference 2017 in ... of the life-sciences industry for ensuring label quality and improving patient safety. ...
(Date:9/21/2017)... ... September 21, 2017 , ... The New England Center ... announced today the election of Yie-Hsin Hung to the Board of Directors. , ... Board of Directors. Ms. Hung is an invaluable addition to our team,” said Vincent ...
(Date:9/21/2017)... ... September 21, 2017 , ... ... and highly accurate cancer screening tests, has received two prestigious recognitions that acknowledge ... survival rates. , Preora has been named a Top 100 Finalist ...
(Date:9/21/2017)... New York (PRWEB) , ... September 21, 2017 , ... ... named “One Yoga Mat Revolution” on 6th, 7th and 8th October at Miranda Kuo ... renowned yoga mat art pieces, such as Zen Kodo mat. Wanderlust , one ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/19/2017)... ANN ARBOR, Mich. , Sept. 19, 2017 HistoSonics, Inc., a venture-backed medical ... the precise destruction of targeted tissues, announced three leadership team developments today:   ... Josh Stopek, PhD ... ... Veteran medical device executive ...
(Date:9/19/2017)... LOUISVILLE, Ky. , Sept. 19, 2017   ZirMed ... and predictive analytics, today announced that it has been ranked ... the Black Book™ Rankings 2017 User Survey. ZirMed ... software solution for large hospitals and medical centers over 200 ... in Black Book,s healthcare technology user survey history. ...
(Date:9/18/2017)... KALAMAZOO, Mich. , Sept. 18, 2017  PMD ... OptiMed Specialty Pharmacy of Kalamazoo, Mich. ... strategic hub service that expedites and streamlines patient and ... Spiro PD 2.0, and wellness management services.  ... medical device used to measure lung function for a ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: