Predicting quality of life of mothers of autistic children: a structural equation model

  • F. Ardeshiri
  • S. Foroozanfar
  • H. Zamanian
  • R. Sadeghi
  • M. Amini


Background: Autism in children, as a source of stress, affects psychological health and quality of life of family and particularly parents. So, the aim of this study is designing a model which could predict mothers' quality of life based on coping and spiritual well-being by structural equation modeling methods: 203 mothers of children with autism from three cities were selected non-randomly. Mothers were assessed by three instruments: Lazarus ways of coping scale, Elisson spiritual well-being scale and SF-36 quality of life scale. Findings: Mean age of mothers was 36.01 (SD=6.92). Pierson Correlation showed a significant correlation between quality of life and just problem-focused coping types (r=0.538) (not emotion-focused) and spiritual well-being (r=0.461). Regression analysis showed that 21 percent of quality of life could be predicted by two domains of spiritual well-being containing religious and existential well-being. In structural equation analysis, regarding AGFI 0.93, RMSA 0.079 and CFI and IFI 0.98, the final model was confirmed and showed that only mental health dimension of quality of life could be predicted by problem-focused coping styles and spiritual well-being. Discussion: Mental health of mothers of children with autism, could be improved by interventions targeting parents coping styles and spiritual well-being. Emotion-focused cognitive interventions along with logo therapy could be combined to improve quality of life of mothers of autistic children.
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