Parents who have a child with substantial disabilities have two distinct roles, parent and caregiver. This study sought to understand how parental and caregiver roles require distinct skills, attitudes, and behaviors that are affected by the concept of parental ambiguous loss. Using boundary ambiguity as a predictor of ambiguous loss, this study quantitatively explored levels of ambiguous loss experienced by caregiver parents. Results showed that ambiguous loss, as exhibited through boundary ambiguity positively correlated with levels of depression, and anxiety, but was negatively correlated with levels of parental efficacy, parental satisfaction and familial/friend social support. The results of this needs assessment provided a quantitative gauge of boundary ambiguity among caregiver parents that currently did not exist. Based on these results, a pilot intervention was developed to improve individual and family resilience The results of this needs assessment will potentially inform the larger systems that attempt to provide timely support and auxiliary resources to caregiver parents.
Marital and Family Therapy
Counseling and Family Sciences
School of Behavioral Health
Michelson, David J.
Doctor of Marital and Family Therapy (DMFT)
Year Degree Awarded
Date (Title Page)
Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings
Children with Disabilities - Family Relationships; Parents of Children with Disabilities; Disabled Children - Psychology; Parent-Child Relations; Caregivers - Psychology; Needs Assessment
Subject - Local
Caregiver Roles; Boundary Ambiguity; Ambiguous Loss; Parental Efficacy; Parental Satisfaction
Loma Linda University Libraries
This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.
Garcia, Liza Maria, "A Needs Assessment of Caregiving Parents to Children with Substantial Disabilities" (2015). Loma Linda University Electronic Theses, Dissertations & Projects. Paper 246.
Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives