What Does Research Say About Parenting Stress?

What does research say about parenting?

“Support for women
with high and low education ‘Parenting
stress’ (the stress
experienced by parents in caring for
a child) undermines
sensitive, responsive
parenting and negatively affects
children’s development and

A new study, Parenting stress and parent support among
mothers with high
and low education,
explores whether
differences in
parenting stress,
according to parental socio- economic position, can be explained by any differences in support that mothers receive.
The study gathered
information on
mothers’ parenting
stress from over
5,800 families in a
large, nationally
sample (Growing Up
in Scotland second
birth cohort), interviewed in
2011-2012 when
the child was ten
months. Parenting
stress was measured
using an abbreviated
version of the Parental Stress Scale
[1], computing the
average score of
mothers’ agreement
with three statements (5-point response scale):

‘Having a child
leaves little time
and flexibility in my life’

‘It is difficult to
balance different
because of my child’

‘Having a child has
meant having too
few choices and
too little control
over my life’.”



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