Employed Parents of Children Receiving Mental Health Services: Caregiver Strain and Work–life Integration
Applying conservation of resources theory, we examined employment engagement (i.e., months of employment, hours worked per week, days of work missed due to the child’s challenges) among caregivers of children and youth entering community-based mental health service systems. The sample included 3,569 caregivers who were employed at some point in the previous 6 months. Variables associated with employment included family interactions, number of children in the household, caregiver age and gender, and caregiver race and ethnicity. The findings suggest that caregivers’ appraisals of their caregiving experiences were stronger predictors of work engagement than was child symptom severity. We concluded that supporting families as they care for children with emotional and behavioral disorders could reduce caregiver strain, thereby improving employment outcomes. © 2018 The Author(s).
Families in Society
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