Linking parents’ self-stigma to the adjustment of children with disabilities.

This study examined the association of parental self-stigma with child adjustment, and whether parenting self-efficacy and parenting distress mediated the association. Cross-sectional data were collected from 186 families living with kindergarten children identified to have disabilities in Hong Kong, China (mean age = 61.62 months; 76% of them were boys). Using questionnaires, 173 mothers and 112 fathers reported their own self-stigma, parenting self-efficacy, and parenting distress, as well as their children’s prosocial behaviors and externalizing and internalizing behaviors. Multigroup, path analyses revealed a group-invariant model for both mothers and fathers. Controlling for children’s gender and age, parents’ self-stigma was linked to fewer prosocial behaviors and more externalizing and internalizing behaviors among children. Moreover, such links were partially mediated by parenting self-efficacy, but not parenting distress. Theoretically, the findings highlighted the importance of considering family processes when examining the potential impact of parental self-stigma on child adjustment. Practically, the findings pointed to the utility of helping both mothers and fathers to deal with public stigma and increase their parenting self-efficacy in supporting the development of children with disabilities. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)