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Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 28, Issue 5, pp 1272–1282 | Cite as

When One Sibling has Autism: Adjustment and Sibling Relationship

  • Emily A. JonesEmail author
  • Theresa Fiani
  • Jennifer L. Stewart
  • Ridda Sheikh
  • Nicole Neil
  • Daniel M. Fienup
Original Paper
  • 125 Downloads

Abstract

Objectives

The presence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in one sibling can impact typically developing (TD) siblings’ adjustment and quality of the sibling relationship. The present study examined the impact of sibling characteristics on both the sibling relationship and adjustment in TD siblings using self, parent, and clinician reports.

Methods

Fifty-two TD siblings and parents completed questionnaires about TD sibling adjustment and sibling relationship quality.

Results

Greater behavior difficulties in siblings with ASD related to poorer TD sibling adjustment and quality of the sibling relationship. A more positive TD sibling perception of the sibling relationship was associated with greater TD sibling coping and support.

Conclusions

Findings are discussed in terms of how these risk factors can inform interventions.

Keywords

Autism Spectrum Disorder Sibling Adjustment Sibling Relationship Typically Developing Siblings 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We thank the families who participated. We also thank the sibling program and personnel at Queens College, City University of New York that enabled us to conduct this research. We thank Service Corps students from 2014–2017.

Funding

This work was supported in part by awards from the Organization for Autism Research and City University of New York (PSC-CUNY, jointly funded by The Professional Staff Congress and The City University of New York [grant number 69089-00 47], Undergraduate Research and Mentoring Education, Service Corps, and Workforce Development Initiative).

Author Contributions

E.A.J. designed and executed the study and wrote the paper. T.F. assisted with data collection and analyses and collaborated in writing the paper. J.L.S. assisted with data analyses. R.S. assisted with study execution and collaborated in writing the paper. N.N. assisted with data collection and analyses. D.M.F. assisted with study design and execution.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards and approved by the Institutional Review Board at the City University of New York.

Research Involving Human Participants

All procedures involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the authors’ institutional research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

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Copyright information

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

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.City University of New York, Queens College and the Graduate Center, Department of PsychologyQueens CollegeQueensUSA
  2. 2.Western UniversityLondonCanada
  3. 3.City University of New York, Queens College and the Graduate Center, andTeachers College, Columbia UniversityNew YorkUSA

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