Parents’ expectations are known to be a central component in children’s development through multiple pathways; however, limited information exists regarding expectations of parents of children with developmental disabilities. The purpose of the current study was to examine future expectations of parents of children with cerebral palsy (CP), as well as the differences in expectations between mothers and fathers. Forty-nine mothers and fathers of children with CP (6–12 years) participated in this study. Parents completed a Parental Future Expectations Questionnaire for Children with Disabilities, and a Perception of Child’s Ability questionnaire, as well as the Pediatric Evaluation Disability Inventory (PEDI). The Gross Motor Function Measure-66 (GMFM-66) was completed by physical therapists. Parental differences in future expectations were analyzed and multiple-stepwise regressions established parental expectations’ predictors. Parents’ expectations correlated with their child’s characteristics. Parents of children with lower levels of functioning reported lower expectations. No differences were found between mothers’ and fathers’ future expectations; however, differences were found between expectations’ predictors. Predictors of mothers’ expectations were their perceptions of their child’s abilities as well as child’s performance. Fathers’ predictors were child’s level of functional impairment and their perceptions of their child’s abilities. The results indicate that parental expectations relate to their child’s functional ability and differ between parents in relation to the child’s level of impairment (fathers) or child’s actual performance (mothers). These differences should be acknowledged by clinicians when they provide specific support for children with chronic physical disabilities and their families.
|Number of pages||18|
|Journal||Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities|
|State||Published - 1 Apr 2017|
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2016, Springer Science+Business Media New York.
- Developmental disabilities
- Parental differences