Skip to main content
Log in

Perceived competence and behavioral adjustment of siblings of children with autism

  • Published:
Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders Aims and scope Submit manuscript

Abstract

Compared 19 siblings of severely autistic children with 20 siblings of children with Down syndrome and 20 siblings of developmentally normal children. Results reveal that siblings of autistic children have more internalizing and externalizing behavior problems than siblings of developmentally normal children; however, the three groups did not differ significantly on measures of preceived self-competence or parents' report of social competence. Examination of demographic variables indicate that age of sibling and parents' marital satisfaction were associated with siblings' psychological functioning. Implications for future research are discussed.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this article

Subscribe and save

Springer+ Basic
EUR 32.99 /Month
  • Get 10 units per month
  • Download Article/Chapter or Ebook
  • 1 Unit = 1 Article or 1 Chapter
  • Cancel anytime
Subscribe now

Buy Now

Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.

Instant access to the full article PDF.

Similar content being viewed by others

References

  • Achenbach, T. M., & Edelbrock, C. (1983).Manual of the Child Behavior Checklist and Revised Child Behavior Profile. Burlington: University of Vermont.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bryant, B. K. (1982). Sibling relationships in middle childhood. In M. E. Lamb & B. Sutton-Smith (Eds.),Sibling relationships: Their nature and significance across the life span (pp. 87–121). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

    Google Scholar 

  • Cicirelli, V. G. (1985). Sibling relationships throughout the life cycle. In L. L'Abate (Ed.),The handbook of family psychology and therapy (Vol. 1, pp. 177–214). Homewood, IL: Dorsey.

    Google Scholar 

  • Dunn, J., & Kendrick, C. (1982). Siblings and their mothers: Developing relationships within the family. In M. E. Lamb & B. Sutton-Smith (Eds.),Sibling relationships: Their nature and significance across the life span (pp. 39–60). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

    Google Scholar 

  • Dyson, L. L. (1989). Adjustment of siblings of handicapped children: A comparison.Journal of Pediatric Psychology, 14, 215–229.

    Google Scholar 

  • Emery, R. E. (1982). Interparental conflict and the children of discord and divorce. Psychological Bulletin,92, 310–330.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ferrari, M. (1984). Chronic illness: Psychosocial effects of siblings—I, Chronically ill boys.Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 25, 459–476.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ferrari, M. (1987). The diabetic child and well sibling: Risks to the well child's self-concept.Children's Health Care, 15, 141–147.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gath, A. (1972). The mental health of siblings of congenitally abnormal children.Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 13, 211–218.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gath, A. (1974). Sibling reactions to mental handicap: A comparison of the brothers and sisters of Mongol children.Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 15, 187–198.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gayton, W. F., Friedman, S. B., Tavormina, J. F., & Tucker, P. (1977). Children with cystic fibrosis: I. Psychological test finding of patients, siblings and parents.Pediatrics, 59, 888–894.

    Google Scholar 

  • Graliker, B. V., Fishler, K., & Koch, R. (1962). Teenage reaction to a mentally retarded sibling.American Journal of Mental Deficiency, 66, 838–843.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hanson, C. L., Henggeler, S. W., Harris, M. A., Cigrang, J. A., Schinkel, A. M., Rodrigue, J. R., & Klesges, R. C. (1992). Contributions of sibling relations to the adaptation of youths with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus.Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 60, 104–112.

    Google Scholar 

  • Harter, S. (1979).Perceived Competence Scale for Children [manual]. Denver, CO: University of Denver.

    Google Scholar 

  • Harter, S. (1982). The perceived competence scale for children.Child Development, 53, 87–97.

    Google Scholar 

  • Harter, S. (1983). Developmental perspectives on the self-system. In E. M. Hetherington (Ed.),Handbook of child psychology: Vol. 4. Socialization, personality, and social development (pp. 103–196). New York: Wiley.

    Google Scholar 

  • Harter, S., & Pike, R. (1981).The Pictorial Perceived Competence Scale for Young Children. Unpublished manuscript, University of Denver.

  • Harvey, D. H., & Greenway, A. P. (1984). The self-concept of physically handicapped children and their nonhandicapped siblings: An empirical investigation.Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 25, 273–284.

    Google Scholar 

  • Henggeler, S. W., & Borduin, C. M. (1990).Family therapy and beyond: A multisystemic approach to treating the behavior problems of children and adolescents. Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hollingshead, A. B. (1975).Four-factor index of social status. Unpublished manuscript, Yale University Department of Sociology.

  • Howlin, P. (1988). Living with impairment: The effects on children of having an autistic sibling.Child: Care, Health, and Development, 14, 395–408.

    Google Scholar 

  • Locke, H. J., & Wallace, K. M. (1959). Short marital adjustment and prediction tests: Their reliability and validity.Marriage and Family Living, 21, 251–255.

    Google Scholar 

  • Mates, T. E. (1990). Siblings of autistic children: Their adjustment and performance at home and in school.Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 20, 545–553.

    Google Scholar 

  • McHale, S. M., & Pawletko, T. M. (1992). Differential treatment of siblings in two family contexts.Child Development, 63, 68–81.

    Google Scholar 

  • McHale, S. M., Sloan, J., & Simeonsson, R. J. (1984). Children with handicapped brothers and sisters. In E. Schopler & G. B. Mesibov (Eds.),The effects of autism on the family (pp. 85–98). New York: Plenum Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • McHale, S. M., Sloan, J., & Simeonsson, R. J. (1986). Sibling relationships of children with autistic, mentally retarded and nonhandicapped brothers and sisters.Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 16, 399–413.

    Google Scholar 

  • Morgan, S. B. (1988). The autistic child and family functioning: A developmental family-systems perspective.Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 18, 263–280.

    Google Scholar 

  • O'Leary, K. D., & Turkewitz, H. (1978). Methodological errors in marital and child treatment research.Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 46, 747–758.

    Google Scholar 

  • Rodrigue, J. R., Morgan, S. B., & Geffken, G. (1990). Families of autistic children: Psychological functioning of mothers.Journal of Clinical Child Psychology, 19, 371–379.

    Google Scholar 

  • Rodrigue, J. R., Morgan, S. B., & Geffken, G. (1992). Psychosocial adaptation of fathers of children with autism, Down syndrome, and normal development.Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 22, 249–264.

    Google Scholar 

  • Simeonsson, R. J., & McHale, S. M. (1981). Review: Research on handicapped children-sibling relationships.Child: Care, Health, and Development, 7, 153–171.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sparrow, S. S., Balla, D. A., & Cicchetti, D. V. (1984).Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales: Survey Form manual. Circle Pines, MN: American Guidance Service.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Rodrigue, J.R., Geffken, G.R. & Morgan, S.B. Perceived competence and behavioral adjustment of siblings of children with autism. J Autism Dev Disord 23, 665–674 (1993). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01046108

Download citation

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01046108

Keywords

Navigation