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An Exploratory Study of Autism Traits and Parenting

  • Cheryl DissanayakeEmail author
  • Amanda Richdale
  • Natasha Kolivas
  • Lindsay Pamment
OriginalPaper

Abstract

The study examined the association between autism traits and parenting when raising a typically developing (TD) child, and differences in parenting needs between parents with high and low traits. Fifty-eight parents with a blood relative with Autism (who happened to be an offspring with ASD in all cases) and a TD child completed the Autism Quotient, demographic and psychological information, as well as reporting on Parenting Sense of Competence, the Parent–Child Relationship, and Parenting Needs. Autism traits did not uniquely contribute to parenting self-esteem, but were associated with parenting difficulties for their TD child, and some aspects of this parent–child relationship. Parents with high autism traits reported more parenting difficulties than parents with low traits. The study identified specific aspects of parenting needing support to assist parents with high autism traits prosper in their parenting role.

Keywords

Autism spectrum disorder Parent–child relationship Autism traits Parenting sense of competence Parenting difficulties Autism Quotient 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We would like to acknowledge the parents who participated in this study, and our funder, the William and Vera Houston Memorial Trust. CD and AR conceived of the study and study design.

Author Contributions

CD oversaw its execution carried out by NK and LP. NK developed the Parenting Difficulties Questionnaire (PDQ) together with CD and LP. All authors were involved in data analyses and interpretation of results. CD and AR drafted the manuscript together with NK, and all authors provided critical comment on the draft and editing of the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cheryl Dissanayake
    • 1
    Email author
  • Amanda Richdale
    • 1
  • Natasha Kolivas
    • 1
  • Lindsay Pamment
    • 1
  1. 1.Olga Tennison Autism Research Centre, School of Psychology & Public HealthLa Trobe UniversityMelbourneAustralia

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