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Siblings of children and young people with autism. An exploration of typical siblings' constructions, perceptions and coping responses

Roberts, Sara Louise 2012. Siblings of children and young people with autism. An exploration of typical siblings' constructions, perceptions and coping responses. Cardiff University.
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Abstract

The inter-sibling relationships of children and young people with autism have generally been overlooked in the literature. Whilst research has increasingly focused on this topic, relatively little is known about the constructions, perceptions and coping responses of typical siblings of children and young people with autism. A child with autism in the family presents a unique challenge and little is known about how this impacts on typical siblings. Typical siblings of children and young people with autism are proposed to be at increased risk for adjustment difficulties, as a result of interactions between complex genetic and environmental variables. Semi-structured, open-ended interviews were conducted with twelve adolescent typical siblings to explore their constructions, perceptions and coping responses. The data was analysed using thematic analysis and nine broad themes emerged: (1) knowledge and understanding of autism; (2) perceptions; (3) the quality of the inter-sibling relationship; (4) the impact of their brothers’ condition; (5) coping strategies; (6) perceptions of others; (7) support; (8) the future; and (9) acceptance and ambivalence. These themes were developed into models and the findings present initial evidence which accounts for some variability in typical siblings’ constructions, perceptions and coping responses. Such factors have important implications for individual adjustment, inter-sibling relationships, intra-familial relationships and global family functioning. These findings may be used to inform future large scale research designs, with a view to developing comprehensive assessment and support services for typical siblings of children and young people with autism. The Educational Psychologist (EP) will be integral in identifying typical siblings who may be at risk for adjustment difficulties. The EP is also well placed to develop interventions and support services for typical siblings of children and young people with autism. Therefore, this research is direct relevance to the EP, as well as those working with children and young people with autism and their families.

Item Type: Thesis (Other)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
Uncontrolled Keywords: siblings children autism ; families autism ; sibling relationship autism ;siblings children disabilities ; sibling coping autism ; sibling autism support ; sibling constructions autism ; siblings ASD ; sibling experiences autism ; typical siblngs autism
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 19 Mar 2016 23:05
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/37780

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