The effects of parental illness and other ill family members on youth caregiving experiences

Pakenham, Kenneth I. and Cox, Stephen (2015) The effects of parental illness and other ill family members on youth caregiving experiences. Psychology and Health, 30 7: 857-878. doi:10.1080/08870446.2014.1001390

Author Pakenham, Kenneth I.
Cox, Stephen
Title The effects of parental illness and other ill family members on youth caregiving experiences
Journal name Psychology and Health   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1476-8321
Publication date 2015-02-13
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/08870446.2014.1001390
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 30
Issue 7
Start page 857
End page 878
Total pages 22
Place of publication Abingdon, Oxon United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Abstract Informed by a model of family role redistribution derived from the family ecology framework, this study examined differences in two proposed psychological components of role redistribution (youth caregiving experiences and responsibilities) between youth of a parent with illness and their peers from ‘healthy’ families controlling for the effects of whether a parent is ill or some other family member, illness type and demographics. Based on self-report questionnaire data, four groups of Australian children were derived from a community sample of 2474 youth (‘healthy’ family, n = 1768; parental illness, n = 336; other family member illness (OFMI), n = 254; both parental and OFMI, n = 116). The presence of any family member with a serious illness is associated with an intensification of youth caregiving experiences relative to peers from healthy families. This risk is elevated if the ill family member is a parent, if more illnesses are present and by certain youth and family demographics, and especially by higher caregiving responsibilities. The presence of a family member, particularly a parent, with a serious medical condition has pervasive increased effects on youth caregiving compared to healthy families, and these effects are not fully accounted for by illness type, demographics or caregiving responsibilities.
Keyword Parental illness
Family health
Young carers
Youth caregiving
Youth adjustment
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Psychology Publications
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