Awareness, Parenting, Anger, among Parents of Children with Specific Learning Disability

By Kruthi, M. K.; Seemanthini, T. S. et al. | Journal of Psychosocial Research, July-December 2012 | Go to article overview

Awareness, Parenting, Anger, among Parents of Children with Specific Learning Disability


Kruthi, M. K., Seemanthini, T. S., Sharan, Vishnu, Journal of Psychosocial Research


INTRODUCTION

Specific Learning Disability

Specific Learning Disability/Specific developmental disorders of Scholastic Skills (ICD- 10) or Learning disabilities (DSM-IV) are umbrella terms that cover a wide variety of specific learning difficulties; their common denominator is that all involve islands of poor functioning in children whose performance in other areas of schoolwork is average or above average (Morgan, et al., 1997). Specific Learning Disability can involve disability in Reading skills, Linguistic skills, Perceptual skills, Mathematical skills, Attentional skills and Disorder of written expression. These difficulties impair the child's academic performance and writing in everyday life (Kaplan, et al., 1994; Baird, et al., 2003). True prevalence is not known. Studies consistently note an increased prevalence of this disorder in males (Silver, et al n.d). Present studies however indicate that is at least a fair incidence in females and the lopsided incidence reported is more due to a reporting bias (Shaywitz et al, 2008). There is a bearing of Genetic influences, Deficits in central information processing, psychosocial factors (Renschmidt, 2000) etc. In the etiology of SLD.

Awareness

Awareness about a condition is an important aspect to consider, in order for a clinician to formulate better treatment for the child and enhance coping of the caretakers. Awareness generally could be defined as, 1. The ability to make forced-choice decisions above a chance level of performance (Objective). 2. The awareness (Subjective) with self-reports indicating that an observer consciously sees a stimulus (Merikle, 1998). Families usually want to know the cause of the disability and to be able to give it a name, they want to balance how they care for people who have a learning disability along with others (Statham, 2011).

Home and family occupy a very significant place in our lives. The delicate and finely turned relationships with family members can often turn sour and become an extreme source of stress. Children can be a source both of great joy and stress. Examples of domestic stressors related to children: Handicapped child, Lack of respect for parents or teachers, Poor academic performance, Bad behavior at school etc. (Sharma, 1999). Longitudinal studies have shown that maternal mental health problems can have significant consequences on long-term emotional and mental well-being of the child (Barlow, et al., 2009).

Parenting Styles

Psychologist Diana Baumrind (1971, 1991) identified four patterns of parenting styles. Authoritative Parents are warm but firm. They encourage their adolescent to be independent while maintaining limits on their actions. Authoritarian Parents display little warmth and are highly controlling. They are strict disciplinarians, use a restrictive, punitive style, and insist that their child follow parental directions. Permissive Parents are very warm, but undemanding. They are indulgent and passive in their parenting, and believe that the way to demonstrate their love is to give in to their child's wishes. Uninvolved Parents are not warm and do not place any demands on their child. They minimize their interaction time, and, in some cases, are uninvolved to the point of being neglectful.

Parenting styles may also differ between parents (e.g., one parent is permissive while the other parent is authoritarian) (Kopko, 2010). Mothers, fathers, grandparents, siblings- all form unique attachments to children (Pruett, 2010). For healthy and pathologic psychological development, the influence of the mother or other primary caretaker becomes very crucial along with intrafamilial and extrafamilial environmental factors. Development then would reflect the continuous dynamic interaction between the individual and the environment at all age periods (Chess, 2000).

Anger

Anger is defined as a negative, phenomenological (or internal) feeling state associated with specific cognitive and perceptual distortions and deficiencies (eg; misappraisals, errors and attributions of blame, injustice, preventability and intentionality), subjective labelling, physiological changes, and action tendencies to engage in socially constructed and reinforced organized behavioural scripts. …

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