The Effect of Children with Special Needs on their Siblings

Dear Audience,

You are reading the Wiki page on the effect of children with special needs on their siblings. The page is started with a brief introduction on the nature of special needs, followed by annotated bibliographical sources that provide a general picture of how living with children with special needs affect siblings' mental well-being and coping strategies. There are also separate sections concentrating on siblings of individuals diagnosed with specific disorders, i.e. Autism Spectrum Disorder, Down Syndrome, and Schizophrenia. Finally, a short conclusion on relevant research is drawn from an unbiased position.

Hopefully you will find this site relevant and helpful for your own research on the topic. We also hope that you enjoy reading the page just as how we enjoyed working on it. Thank you.

Our research group,
Taquyaah, Melissa, Samantha, Thuy, & Mhica

Introduction

Definition of special needs

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Figure. Photograph of a sibling of a child with special needs. Down Sydrome Research Foundation, http://www.dsrf.org/

"Special needs" refers to an umbrella that covers a wide range of diagnoses. A child with special needs requires care and services that are not typical of the average child. He or she may experience life and need understood differently than others their age. Standardized assessment and diagnosis is designed to support children with special needs and their family in regards to obtaining needed services, developing appropriate goals for personal growth, and gaining understanding from the public (Woolfolk, Winne, & Perry, 2012).

Categorizes of special needs

There are five categorizes of special needs, including medical issues, behavior issues, developmental disabilities, learning disabilities, mental health issues.

  • Children with medical issues are diagnosed with serious conditions such as cancer and heart defects, muscular dystrophy and cystic fibrosis; chronic conditions like asthma and diabetes; congenital conditions like cerebral palsy and dwarfism; and health issues such as food allergies and obesity.
  • Special needs in the behavior domain are recognized in children with Attention Deficit/Hyper Disorder, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, Dysfunction of Sensory Integration, and Tourette Syndrome.
  • Developmental disabilities are diverse from autism, Down Syndrome to intellectual disabilities.
  • Children with learning disabilities like dyslexia and Central Auditory Processing Disorder face difficulties with schoolwork regardless of their intellectual abilities.
  • Examples of childhood mental health issues are different types of Anxiety Disorder, depression, schizophrenia.

(Woolfolk, Winne, & Perry, 2012)

Psychological well-being and coping strategies in siblings of children with special needs

Geller, D., & Powell, T. H. (1986). The unique needs of adolescents with handicapped siblings. International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health, 2(4), 317-326.
Interviews with teenagers with handicapped siblings illustrate that they are likely to share a variety of special concerns regardless of what type of handicapped conditions in their siblings. Firstly, the participants tend to concern about their brother or sister and the special needs they have. Secondly, they raise parent-related concerns, such as parental expectations and communication, the parents’ mental health, how to support their parents in different areas including childrearing. Thirdly, these adolescents are concerned about their own health, feelings, and how well they get along with the handicapped siblings. Last but not least, the teenagers expressed concerns such as being open with their peers about their handicapped siblings, how their siblings are accepted and not bullied at school and public, and the effects on dating. The study indicated issues regarding school, and community acceptance for both children with special needs and their siblings. The authors also discussed intervention strategies for supporting siblings in detail.

Giallo, R., Roberts, R., Emerson, E., Wood, C., & Gavidia-Payne, S. (2014). The emotional and behavioral functioning of siblings of children with special health care needs across childhood. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 35(4), 814-825.
The research examined the emotional and behavioral well-being of 106 Australian siblings of children with special needs identified in the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC). It was found that 15-52% of the participating siblings displayed emotional and behavioral challenges in the at-risk or clinical range on the parent-reported Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) when aged 4–5 (wave 1), 6–7 (wave 2), 8–9 (wave 3) and 10–11 years (wave 4). With socioeconomic varieties under control, there was a significantly higher rate in mental health difficulties in these siblings’ life in comparison to that in their peers’, and such difference was consistent across various time points of childhood. Latent growth modeling demonstrated little improvement in mental well-being for the siblings, while behavioral symptoms was on decline for their friends. The study indicates that some siblings of children with special needs are at high risk of emotional and behavioral difficulties across childhood, pointing out the crucial issue of assessing and improving well-being of all family members when supporting to children with special needs.

Kyla Boyse, R.N. Reviewed by Brenda Volling, Ph.D. (2009) University of Michigan Health System. Siblings of Kids with Special Needs. Retrieved from http://www.med.umich.edu/yourchild/topics/specneed.htm
The University of Michigan Medical School is the “eighth in the nation in terms of National Institutes of Health funding - $366 million in Fiscal Year 2009 alone and another $69 million was won in competition with other top-notch researchers at universities around the country” (Siblings of Kids with Special Needs, 2009).
The research explores the effect of siblings of children with special needs. The article suggest that these siblings in turn may develop qualities such as empathy, patience, acceptance for differences or may give a hard time vying for attention due to jealous of attention given to the sibling with special needs. It also explores signs or warnings parents, guardians and or caregivers should be aware of that the sibling needs help coping with having a brother or sister with special needs. It also offer parenting tips for parent to help meet the need of the sibling while helping the siblings understand and develop positive ways to express their feelings towards their brother or sister with special needs.

National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (n.d.). Sibling Issues. Retrieved from: http://nichcy.org/families-community/siblings
Reported in their own words data of what the siblings had to say about their experience of having a sibling with special needs. Report on the influence the siblings had on each other and the important roles in each other’s lives. It also explores how the age of a sibling can have different impacts on the reactions and adjustments of having a sibling with special needs.
Please take note that the National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (NICHCY) is no longer in operation. The funding from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) has ended September 30, 2013”. The information on the site will still be available until September of 2014.
This site also provided a lot of resources for parents, and siblings of children with special needs as such as books. The books are experiences and stories of siblings of children with special needs. Please refer to Supplemental Resources section on the site for more information on the books for siblings with special needs.

Orfus, M., & Howe, N. (2008). Stress appraisal and coping in siblings of children with special needs. Exceptionality Education Canada, 18(3), 166-181.
Self-report data from siblings with children with special needs demonstrate that the perceived family stress and coping is has a significant effect on these siblings’ mental health. In this study, interviews were conducted with twelve school-age siblings to address their daily stress, mental well-being, and coping strategies in regards to sharing the home with a child with special needs. Regarding daily hassles, these children indicated their most stress out moments were when their sister or brother cried, screamed, or yelled in order to avoid certain tasks. They also found themselves in stressful conditions when being embarrassed about their sibling with special needs in front of their peers. Speaking of mental uplifts, the participants reported that they were in the best mood when being hugged or kissed by their siblings, or playing with them on a daily basis. The researchers also found that wishful thinking was likely to be the most common coping strategy for these children to deal with stress resulted from living in a family with such special condition. Implications for working with families with special needs are discussed.

Ryu, S. Y. (2006). Perspectives on sibling relationships involving an individual with special needs: A comparison of typically developing siblings and parents from American and Korean cultural backgrounds. (Order No. 3237097, Teachers College, Columbia University). ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, 165.
Sibling relationships with an individual with special needs are critical for the mental health status of developing siblings because they are typically potential care-givers and sources of support for their siblings with special needs after their parents’ death. However, research has not been able to address adequately how family roles and cultural factors mediate perspective differences on sibling relationships along with family relationships, sibling self-concept, and sibling commitment.

For family role factors, the research examined perspectives on family relationships, sibling relationships, sibling self-concept, and sibling commitment between typically developing siblings and their parents from American and Korean cultural backgrounds. 50 American and 66 Korean young adults between 18 and 30 years old and lived with their siblings with special needs, and one of their parents were studied. The study methods were self-administered questionnaires that addressed the four dependent variables.
Siblings and parents reported significantly variant perspectives of over family relationships and sibling commitments. Parents were found to be more positive than their typically developing children for family relationships, and typically developing siblings were found to be more positive than their parents for sibling commitment.

Regarding cultural factors, American and Korean participants reported significantly different perspectives on over family relationships and sibling self-concept. American participants were associated with higher levels of both family relationships and sibling self-concept compared to Korean participants. Especially on sibling commitment, American siblings were indicated to show present-focused and affective-oriented sibling commitment while Korean siblings were more likely to have future-focused and instrumental-oriented sibling commitment. For instance, approximately 40% of the typically developing American siblings expected their siblings with special needs to live with them whereas about 80% of typically developing Korean siblings expected their siblings with special needs to live with them after their parents' death.

The researchers discussed in detail several demographic variables that were remarkably related to the four measures. Not only recommending future research further examining more closely the role of age and gender in sibling perspectives, the authors also suggested that multi-role and multicultural perspectives on these measures can be useful in planning and coordinating services such as guardianship, living arrangement, and long-term financial support for individuals with special needs and their siblings.

Strohm, K. (2008). Guest editorial: Too important to ignore: Siblings of children with special needs. AeJAMH (Australian e-Journal for the Advancement of Mental Health), 7(2), 1-6.
The editorial examines the mental health issues for siblings of children with special needs, the risk and protective variables that alter adjustment, and the timing of intervention strategies. The editorial discusses Siblings Australia’s approaches and their effectiveness in addressing the needs of siblings. It concludes by examining policy implications and recommending for a greater focus on this group of children, both at government and community levels.

Unruh, A. M. (1999). Siblings of children with special needs. Canadian Journal of Occupational Therapy. 59(3). Retrieved from http://www.caot.ca/cjot_pdfs/cjot59/59.3unruh.pdf
Siblings of children with special needs discusses the important role siblings of children with special needs play in the development of the individual with special needs, it also mentions the problematic risks and emotional adjustments the siblings may face. The research was reviewed and followed by a description of “The Ottawa Children's Treatment Center sibling programme”. This article states that siblings of children with special needs should also be of concern to therapists for three reasons. The first reason is the impact the sibling has on the special needs child whether it is positive or negative. Siblings can be uncertain to when the special needs child should be helped example bulling or when to allow them to foster independents. Secondly is the sibling’s risk of “emotional disorders and other problems of adjustment for the sibling”. Thirdly the influence of paternal adjustments and how it can cause and effect on the sibling in turn causing problems in the relationship and interaction of the siblings. This article also offers information on early sibling research and studied of sibling research using control groups.

SibConnection (2011). The Other Child (Part 1 of 2). SibConnection. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lUZ2DVSt5Qk
SibConnection provides siblings of developmentally disabled brothers or sisters a safe, judgment free environment to share family challenges, feelings, concerns and meet new friends. Participants learn about their siblings’ disabilities and become better equipped to handle the implications. Facilitated by a licensed social worker, Charley Moskowitz, each session is spent sharing, and participating in an activity. Charley Moskowitz has been featured in the New York Times, on WNBC, and in Pennsylvania State University textbook The Development of Children. This video highlights SibConnection, a support group for siblings of children living with special needs.

A focus on siblings of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Arli, S. (2013). The effects of high and low functioning autism on siblings: A booklet for mental health professionals. (Order No. 3554674, Alliant International University). ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, 165. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.library.yorku.ca/docview/1317415475?accountid=15182. (1317415475).

Sevil Arli from Alliant International University in Los Angeles submitted a booklet for mental health professionals conducting research on the effects of a functional autism as a spectrum disorder, on siblings. He found that historically, autism was only thought of as an emotional problem caused by inadequate parenting practices. Specifically, the application of rejection and ambivalence that cause negative effects on the child. Autism began to be classified as a developmental disorder with its own specific symptoms in comparison to schizophrenia. Sevil Arli explains the prevalence and statistics of autism by contrasting it to all other medical or psychological conditions that, autism is not specified to one race, religion, gender or socioeconomic status, meaning anyone, anywhere at any time can be diagnosed with this mental illness. He states that the risk factors concerning siblings may include the typical childhood issue of emotional, behavioural and psychological that go unnoticed. For instance, giving the parent’s time to the child that needs more attention and care. When a diagnosis of autism is brought into any average family, the household will usually be bombarded with added stress, anxiety, and uncertainty. Autism is a spectrum disorder, meaning it is a group of disorders which are categorized and classified together by sharing similar features and characteristics.

Orsmond, G. I., & Seltzer, M. M. (2007). Siblings of individuals with autism or down syndrome: Effects on adult lives. Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, 51(9), 682-696.
G.I Orsmond from Sargent College of Health and Rehabilitations Sciences, Boston University, Boston, MA, USA and M.M Seltzer from Waisman Cente, University of Wisconsin-Madison, WI, USA wrote this article as a research on intellectual disability dawning from three questions asked for siblings with Autism Spectrum Disorder [ASD] or Down Syndrome [DS] involvement in the family. The research included information from 154 of adult siblings, the question asked of their experience growing up, gender effects and which factors are predictive of variation in the sibling relationship for adults with the disability. Siblings who no longer have primary caregivers may face difficulty applying roles in caring for their siblings while having their own problems and responsibilities as well. This article provides comparison between ASD and DS. It is found that siblings communicated more effectively with individuals with DS and significantly have higher levels of positive affect in their relationship than siblings of individuals with ASD. Gender effects varied by a number of things such as emotion-focused coping and not by the gender composition of sibling dyad for either group. While in both groups, a close sibling relationship is showed when they use more problem-focused coping strategies implying for intervention.

Orsmond, G. I., Kuo, H., & Seltzer, M. M. (2009). Siblings of individuals with an autism spectrum disorder: Sibling relationships and wellbeing in adolescence and adulthood . Autism, 13(1), 59-80.
The study focuses on the relationships and wellbeing in adolescence and adulthood of siblings of individuals with an Autism Spectrum Disorder [ASD]. The authors suggest that sibling relationships may place significant influence on each other’s lives, and adult siblings may at times be likely to take part in caring and support for their siblings with ASD. Besides, living with a child with special needs may alter siblings’ psychological development. Despite these facts, the authors indicate that researchers have focused more on parental relationships and mental health status rather than that in siblings.
The research examines the frequency and effectiveness emotion-centered coping strategies and problem-focused coping strategies in siblings of children with special needs. The methods involved mailed questionnaires and phone interviews with participating siblings of different age groups.. The research also looks into the roles parents play in mediating the relationship quality, as well as the behavioral development of siblings of children with ASD.

Penn State Public Media (2010). Autism and Sibling Relationships. WPSU. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4D7kXC-wVY
Patty Satalia from WPSU interviews Dr. David Celiberti who is a clinical psychologist about Autism and Sibling Relationships. Satalia has won many awards as a talk-show host/news anchor such as an Award of Excellence from the Mid-Atlantic Region of the University of Continuing Education Association for her public affairs work in Children with Autism: Time is Brain (2004). The video looks into the ups and downs in the everyday lives of kids living with siblings who are autistic. Dr. David Celiberti served as the President of ASAT (Association for Science in Autism Treatment) from 2006 to 2012 and presently resides as the Co-President. He received his PhD in clinical psychology from Rutgers University in 1993 and founded the Parent-Professional Partnership Special Interest Group for the Association for Behavior Analysis International. He also, sits on various advisory boards in the field of autism and early childhood education. He has conducted research in family intervention and autism as well as taught graduate and undergraduate courses in relation to behaviour analysis (ABA).

Hope Educational Consulting (2012). Attending to the Silent Sufferers…Siblings of Kids with Special Needs (Inclusion Fusion 2011). Rebecca Hamilton. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D0O3LfGRzeo
Mrs. Wetherbee completed her undergraduate work at Vanderbilt University, where she majored in Special Education and Human and Organizational Development. She began her teaching career in the Washington, DC area, working at a public school. She has also worked in a hospital setting, as well as teaching continuing education courses at a community college. Mrs. Wetherbee holds a master’s degree in education from Hood College, where she served on the adjunct faculty for the Reading Specialist program. The video displays Katie Wetherbee conducting interviews with Cody Thompson, Ashley Dane, and Austin Dane (siblings of Jonathan…Colleen Swindoll-Thompson's son, Chuck Swindoll's grandson) about their experience as siblings of a child with autism for Inclusion Fusion 2011.

Yirmiya, N., Gamliel, I., Pilowsky, T., Feldman, R., Baron-Cohen, S., & Sigman, M. (2006). The development of siblings of children with autism at 4 and 14 months: Social engagement, communication, and cognition. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 47(5), 511-523.

The Authors of this journal article from different universities explores the effects on siblings at different ages and to compare siblings of child with autism and child with typical development. At 4 months, they examine the responsiveness (gaze and affect) of the infant to name-calling and still-face paradigm. On the other hand, at 14 months, cognition, verbal and non-verbal communication skills were examined. This resulted in weaker synchrony for infant-led reactions but revealed more neutral affect during the still-face procedure than infants with TD. In addition, the authors suggest risks for siblings to acquire “broad phenotype of autism” which are associated with social responsiveness and limited interests/stereotyped behaviour.

A focus on siblings of children with Down Syndrome

Down Sydrome Research Foundation (n.d.). What is Down Syndrome? Retrieved from:
http://www.dsrf.org/news-&-information/information-on-down-syndrome/

The Down Syndrome Research Foundation is an evolving institution that provides” educational programs and services, grounded in foundational research.” It provides the genetic explanation of what causes down syndrome, and explains what it is. It also provides a visual timeline of the history of down syndrome. They express that down syndrome cannot be medicated, but they do provide facility programs which will best benefit a child with down syndrome. Furthermore this website provides other links that can aid in information about down syndrome.

Molina, M. (2014, February 14). Personal Interview.

By the older sibling: "How does having a sibling with down syndrome effect you…?"

  • Socially: My social life, if anything has grown so much more because of my little sister Emma. All my friends just adore her, everyone spoils her and anyone that meets her just falls in love with her. People will start random conversations with me in the stores or out on the street just asking about her. A big concern of ours was kids making fun of her or she was going to be left behind (learning wise) but she's right there with all the kids and they help her in everything. Emma is a lot of fun to be around.
  • Emotionally: When I was younger I was diagnosed with anxiety and depression and I could 100% say Emma was my rock through all of it. Her laugh just gives off this warmness and she makes you want to laugh too. There’s a sense of purity to these kids, you talk to them and you know they love you. They don't even have to say it, they show it. These kids don't know how to hate. I know you can say that about all kids but I know for a fact that kids with down syndrome love so much more pure than other kids. It’s so exciting to watch her develop.
  • Mentally: I would lie if I said it was easy, sometimes she can be difficult. When she was younger we had to communicate through sign language because she wasn't able to speak yet. We had to do all these exercises and appointments because you have to be extra careful with kids that have down syndrome. A "normal" child develops over time on their own, I find that with Emma she does learn a lot on her own, but we also work hard to make sure she is at the level she needs to be for school. Sometimes she can be a handful but all kids are. I would say on behalf of my family she has brought a balance to my house.
  • Personally: Emma has been such a positive influence on me, she has taught me so much. I know that I am a much better person now because I've had her in my life.

By the younger sibling:

  • Socially: She effected my social life by helping me understand my priorities in terms of dedicating my time to her in oppose to hanging out and doing things with my friends.
  • Emotionally: The emotional part would be, she made me become more sympathetic toward kids with mental disabilities.
  • Mentally: My mentality was effected because I stopped with the stereotypes about kids with disabilities and understood that they have potential as well in oppose to thinking they were impaired.
  • Personally: Personally she effected me because having someone so close to you with a disability can be sad and having someone who learns slower than average kids can test my patience often, which makes me test myself and become a better person as time goes on. She effected my life by making me more responsible and loving.

Skotko, B., Levine, S. P., & Goldstein, R. (2011). Having a brother or sister with Down syndrome: Perspectives from siblings. American Journal of Medical Genetics, 155(10), 2348-2359.

Dr. Brian Skotko MD, MPP is a “Board-certified medical geneticist and Co-Director of the Down Syndrome Program at Massachusetts General Hospital”. He has published several articles about down syndrome and achieved many research awards, receiving recognition amongst his field. Dr. B. Skotko co-authored the national award-winning book, Common Threads: Celebrating Life with Down Syndrome (2001) and, Fasten Your Seatbelt: A Crash Course on Down Syndrome for Brothers and Sisters. He completed his studies at Duke University(2001), Harvard Medical School (2006), and Harvard Kennedy School (2006). Dr. B. Skotko has been “featured in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The L.A. Times, NPR’s “On Point,” and ABC’s “Good Morning America.”” He has had many publications and has made several presentations. He continues to contribute research in children with development disabilities specifically down syndrome.

Susan P. Levin, MD completed her studies at the University of Chicago (1959). She has had many publications and contributed to several research projects. She is with the Family Resource Associates, INC.

Dr. R Goldstein completed his studies at Harvard university (1989) and is affiliated with several hospitals including Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston MA. He specializes in the department of Psychosocial Oncology and Palliative Care as well as Pediatrics. Dr. R. Goldstein has also been associated with several publication.

This is a research article that studies brothers’ and sisters’ feelings about their sibling with Down syndrome. “ More than 96% of brothers/ sisters that responded to the survey indicated that they had affection toward their sibling with DS; and 94% of older siblings expressed feelings of pride.” They surveyed the percentage of siblings that felt embarrassment, or hoped they’re sibling was non existent, both were extremely low in percentile. Those expressing embarrassment were about 10% and those wanting to change their siblings syndrome with even less, below 5%. The research continues to give a statistic that amongst 822 that were surveyed, 88% felt as though they were made better by having a sibling with down syndrome and 90% embraced the idea of remaining involved in the live’s of their siblings. The majority of those who participated in the study felt as though having a sibling with Down syndrome was something positive in their lives. The subjects chosen to participate in the research were chosen from non profitable DS organizations,their ages ranged from 12 to approximately 62 years. At the end of the article there are references that can be branched into for further information, the article also provides all data research in charts.

A focus on siblings of children with Schizophrenia

CAMH Center for Addiction and Mental Health (n.d.). What is Schizophrenia? Retrieved from: http://www.camh.ca/en/hospital/health_information/a_z_mental_health_and_addiction_information/schizophrenia/schizophrenia_information_guide/Pages/schizophrenia_whatis.aspx
The Center for Addiction and Mental Health [CAMH] “is Canada's largest mental health and addiction teaching hospital, as well as one of the world's leading research centers in its field” (CAMH n.d.). CAMH is funded thought the “Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Toronto Central Local Health Integration Network grants, Patient revenue, Amortization of deferred capital contributions, Investment income, Ancillary and other income”.
It provides an overview of mental health information, it explains what Schizophrenia is, the signs and symptoms schizophrenia, it also further explores the positive and negative symptoms of schizophrenia along with the cause and risk factors. They also cover the types of treatments that are available for patients with schizophrenia whether it is outpatients or inpatients, medications and or psycho-social interventions and recovery methods. The CAMH site provided no supports or information for or on the siblings of and individual who has special needs despite this, the site provided a great deal of information on various special needs /mental health.

McGraw, P. (2013). Get a Sneak Peak into the World of Childhood Schizophrenia. DrPhil Show. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2-LWQDCefPw
Dr. Phil provides a short video on a segment he did with Michael and Susan Schofield whose 10-year old daughter, Jani was diagnosed with schizophrenia at age 6. She has over 200 imaginary friends as a result of being diagnosed with schizophrenia. Her parents say Jani's imaginary friends bring her comfort but also often encourage her to act out in violent ways including hitting her younger brother Bodhi. When Bodhi was an infant, Jani’s parents tried to keep Bodhi from crying out as the crying would freak Jani out. As a result of Jani’s violent tendencies, Michael and Susan decided to live separately to protect Bodhi from his sister. The video depicts the family’s struggle with having a child with schizophrenia and the struggle within the sibling relationship. Dr. Phil McGraw is a well-known mental health professional and the host of the Dr. Phil Show launched in 2002. The show has earned him 25 Emmy nominations and 5 PRISM Awards. Dr. McGraw earned a B.A. from Midwestern State University and an M.A. and a PhD. in clinical psychology from the University of North Texas, which was followed by a year of postdoctoral training in Forensic Psychology at The Wilmington Institute.

Supplemental Resources

Lavin, J.L. (2001). Special kids need special parents: A resource for parents of children with special needs. New York: Berkley Books.

McHugh, M. (2002). Special siblings: Growing up with someone with a disability. Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes.

Meyer, D. (1997). Views from our shoes: Growing up with a brother or sister with special needs (p. 89). Bethesda, MD: Woodbine House.

Naseef, R.A. (1997). Special children, challenged parents: The struggles and rewards of raising a child with a disability (p. 144). Seacaucus, NJ: Birch Lane Press. (A revised edition of this book was published in 2001 and is available from Paul H. Brookes.)

Conclusion

In general, recent research indicates that living with children with special needs can have both positive and negative effects on the siblings' mental and behavioral functioning. For example, the siblings gain benefits of being more responsible and empathetic towards other people's living challenges (e.g. Molina, 2014), but they are also likely to be at risk of stress and depressed moods (e.g. Kyla, 2009). Besides, there are a number of coping strategies identified in siblings in such unique situation (Orfus & Howe, 2008). However, research on intervention and support services for siblings of children with special needs remains an underlying trend (Strohm, 2008).

References

Arli, S. (2013). The effects of high and low functioning autism on siblings: A booklet for mental health professionals. (Order No. 3554674, Alliant International University). ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, 165. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.library.yorku.ca/docview/1317415475?accountid=15182. (1317415475).

CAMH Center for Addiction and Mental Health (n.d.). What is Schizophrenia? Retrieved from: http://www.camh.ca/en/hospital/health_information/a_z_mental_health_and_addiction_information/schizophrenia/schizophrenia_information_guide/Pages/schizophrenia_whatis.aspx

Down Sydrome Research Foundation (n.d.). What is Down Syndrome? Retrieved from:
http://www.dsrf.org/news-&-information/information-on-down-syndrome

Down Sydrome Research Foundation (n.d.) Photograph of a sibling of a child with special needs. Retrieved from http://www.dsrf.org/

Geller, D., & Powell, T. H. (1986). The unique needs of adolescents with handicapped siblings. International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health, 2(4), 317-326.

Giallo, R., Roberts, R., Emerson, E., Wood, C., & Gavidia-Payne, S. (2014). The emotional and behavioural functioning of siblings of children with special health care needs across childhood. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 35(4), 814-825.

Hope Educational Consulting (2012). Attending to the Silent Sufferers…Siblings of Kids with Special Needs (Inclusion Fusion 2011). Rebecca Hamilton. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D0O3LfGRzeo

Kyla Boyse, R.N. Reviewed by Brenda Volling, Ph.D. (2009) University of Michigan Health System. Siblings of Kids with Special Needs.

Lavin, J.L. (2001). Special kids need special parents: A resource for parents of children with special needs. New York: Berkley Books.

McGraw, P. (2013). Get a Sneak Peak into the World of Childhood Schizophrenia. DrPhil Show. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2-LWQDCefPw

McHugh, M. (2002). Special siblings: Growing up with someone with a disability. Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes.

Molina, M. (2014, February 14). Personal Interview.

Meyer, D. (1997). Views from our shoes: Growing up with a brother or sister with special needs (p. 89). Bethesda, MD: Woodbine House.

Naseef, R.A. (1997). Special children, challenged parents: The struggles and rewards of raising a child with a disability (p. 144). Seacaucus, NJ: Birch Lane Press.

National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (n.d.). Sibling Issues. Retrieved from: http://nichcy.org/families-community/siblings

Orfus, M., & Howe, N. (2008). Stress appraisal and coping in siblings of children with special needs. Exceptionality Education Canada, 18(3), 166-181.

Penn State Public Media (2010). Autism and Sibling Relationships. WPSU. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4D7kXC-wVY

Ryu, S. Y. (2006). Perspectives on sibling relationships involving an individual with special needs: A comparison of typically developing siblings and parents from American and Korean cultural backgrounds. (Order No. 3237097, Teachers College, Columbia University). ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, 165.

SibConnection (2011). The Other Child (Part 1 of 2). SibConnection. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lUZ2DVSt5Qk

Skotko, B., Levine, S. P., & Goldstein, R. (2011). Having a brother or sister with Down syndrome: Perspectives from siblings. American Journal of Medical Genetics, 155(10), 2348-2359.

Strohm, K. (2008). Guest editorial: Too important to ignore: Siblings of children with special needs. AeJAMH (Australian e-Journal for the Advancement of Mental Health), 7(2), 1-6.

Unruh, A. M. (1999). Siblings of children with special needs. Canadian Journal of Occupational Therapy. 59(3). Retrieved from http://www.caot.ca/cjot_pdfs/cjot59/59.3unruh.pdf

Woolfolk, A., Winne, P. H., & Perry, N. E. (. E. (2012). Educational psychology (5th Canadian ed.). Toronto: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Yirmiya, N., Gamliel, I., Pilowsky, T., Feldman, R., Baron-Cohen, S., & Sigman, M. (2006). The development of siblings of children with autism at 4 and 14 months: Social engagement, communication, and cognition. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 47(5), 511-523.

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