A preliminary investigation of parenting attributes of Australian foster carers

Cuskelly, M. M., Hay, I., Winchcomb, M., Cervetto, K. T., Walker, J. M. and Chu, J. C. (2005) A preliminary investigation of parenting attributes of Australian foster carers. The Australian Educational and Developmental Psychologist, 22 2: 65-83. doi:10.1017/S0816512200028765

Author Cuskelly, M. M.
Hay, I.
Winchcomb, M.
Cervetto, K. T.
Walker, J. M.
Chu, J. C.
Title A preliminary investigation of parenting attributes of Australian foster carers
Journal name The Australian Educational and Developmental Psychologist   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0816-5122
Publication date 2005-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1017/S0816512200028765
Open Access Status
Volume 22
Issue 2
Start page 65
End page 83
Total pages 19
Editor T. Hannan
M. Brack
Place of publication Melbourne
Publisher The Australian Psychological Society
Language eng
Subject C1
380107 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology
750307 Families
Abstract Utilising a comparison research design of mothers involved in fostering (N= 28) and their peers (N =28), the major findings were that within the fostering group, those who had been fostering the longest had the lowest sense of efficacy, reflecting that the experience of providing foster care eroded parents' sense of their own skill. In terms of attachment to the children, the data suggested that foster carers may resist becoming too close to the children in their care in order to limit the emotional cost of subsequent separation. Importantly, there was no significant correlation between the length of time in providing foster care and marital satisfaction, which supports the notion that providing foster care does not, in itself cause marital stress. While formal support services were more utilised by foster carers there was some indication that this group is not well integrated into the broader community. Collectively, these findings demonstrate that over the long- term providing fostering care has some negative consequences for the carers in terms of their self-confidence. Agencies designated to work with carers need to consider proactive strategies to reduce this consequence.
Keyword Foster Parents
Parenting Styles
Marital Satisfaction
Q-Index Code C1

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Created: Wed, 15 Aug 2007, 18:17:21 EST