Main Article Content
OBJECTIVE: to examine psychological distress, social support, and life satisfaction of fathers and mothers of intellectually disabled children in our local setting.
METHODS: This cross-sectional study was conducted from 2017 to 2019 at Department of Psychology, University of Peshawar, after approval of Advanced Studies Research Board of university. One hundred and fifty parents (75 mothers and 75 fathers) of intellectually disabled children were selected through purposive sampling technique from Peshawar, Wah Cantonment & Islamabad, Pakistan. Instruments including Depression Anxiety Stress Scale, Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support, and Satisfaction with Life Scale were administered.
RESULTS: Majority (n=64/150; 42.7%) of parents were aging from 20 -35 years. Seventy eight (52%) parents were from province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and 72 (48%) were from Punjab. Findings indicated that fathers’ mean scores were lower on depression anxiety stress scale (M=44.78; SD=14.55) as compared to mothers (M=97.32; SD=34.14). Fathers mean scores were higher on perceived social support (M=43.15; SD=9.30) than mothers (M=25.18, SD=14.36). On life satisfaction fathers means scores (M=17.36, SD=4.42) were also higher than mothers mean scores (M=9.74, SD=6.06)
CONCLUSION: The study results indicated that in our cultural context fathers of the disabled children reported better perceived social support and life satisfaction while mothers experienced higher psychological distress (depression, anxiety, and stress). The role of parents in the children’s lives is concerning area because ignoring such parents’ mental health issues can triggers a lot of problems in this society.
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