Associations between Internalizing Behavior Problems and Parenting Stress in Preschool Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Moderating and Mediating Effects of Children's Effortful ControlFacilities
關鍵詞 Key words : 內化性行為問題 ； 主動控制 ； 自閉症類群障礙症 ； 親職壓力 ； 學齡前兒童 ； autism spectrum disorder ； effortful control ； internalizing behavior problems ； parenting stress ； preschoolers
P.247 - 275
Purpose: Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) usually have a high risk of suffering internalizing behavior problems and self-regulation difficulties. Their parents may also face formidable parenting challenges. The aim of this study is to investigate the direct effects of ASD-diagnosed preschoolers' internalizing behavior problems on multifaceted parenting stress, as well as the moderator and mediator effects of children's effortful control on the relationship between internalizing behavior problems and parenting stress. Methods: 54 Taiwanese preschoolers (4-6 year-old) with ASD and their parents participated. We assessed each child's IQ with an individualized test. Parents completed questionnaires to rate their child's internalizing behavior problems, effortful control, ASD symptom severity, as well as their own parenting stress. Results: The internalizing behavior problems had positive predicting effects on the indicators of parenting stress, including overall stress, parental distress, dysfunctional parent/child interaction, and difficult child. Internalizing behavior problems had a negative association with the child's effortful control when the child's intellectual level and ASD symptoms were controlled. Effortful control had negative effects on overall stress and difficult child parenting stress, and had mediator effects on the relationships between the internalizing behaviors and overall stress as well as difficult child parenting stress, even though there were no significant moderating effects. Conclusions: The internalizing behavior problems of preschoolers with ASD can predict parenting stress, and had an unfavorable relationship with the children's attention and behavior regulation. Children's effortful control mediated the association among internalizing behavior problems and some indicators of parenting stress, even though there were no significant moderating effects. Interventions targeting on children's internalizing behavior problems which seek to enhance children's attention and behavioral self-regulation may be helpful in releasing parenting stress for parents with preschoolers with ASD.