Parenting Stress Among Parents of Deaf and Hearing Children: Associations with Language Delays and Behavior Problems

Alexandra L. Quittner, David H. Barker, Ivette Cruz, Carolyn Snell, Mary E. Grimley, Melissa Botteri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

100 Scopus citations


Objective. This study evaluates predictors of both general and context-specific parenting stress in a cross-sectional sample of hearing parents of young deaf and hearing children. Design. Participants were 181 children who were deaf and 92 children with normal hearing. Perceived parenting stress was measured using both general and context-specific measures. Predictors of parenting stress included parent-reported and observed child behavior problems and language delays. Results. After control for maternal education and family income, parents of deaf children reported more context-specific but not general parenting stress than parents of hearing children. Both parent-reported and observed behavior problems were higher in the deaf group compared with that in the hearing group. Children's hearing status related to child behavior problems by way of oral language delays. Furthermore, hearing status related to parenting stress by way of language delays and child behavior difficulties. Conclusions. Context-specific measures of parenting stress reflect unique challenges of this population. Both language delays and child behavior problems are associated with increased parenting stress. Identification of specific stressors related to parenting a deaf child helps to inform the development of early interventions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)136-155
Number of pages20
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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