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      Psychosocial adjustment of children with a terminally ill parent.

      Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

      Adaptation, Psychological, Adolescent, Bereavement, Child, Child Reactive Disorders, psychology, Child of Impaired Parents, Female, Humans, Male, Neoplasms, Personality Assessment, Terminal Care

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          Abstract

          Although a substantial number of children experience serious parental illness and death, the adjustment problems attendant to the stress of having a fatally ill parent have not been examined systematically. This paper compares the psychosocial adjustment of 62 school-aged children with a terminally ill parent (study sample) with that of children in a community sample, using several standard rating scales. Study children had significantly higher levels of self-reported depression (Children's Depression Inventory) and anxiety (State-Trait Anxiety Inventory) and lower self-esteem (Self-Esteem Inventory). Parents also reported study children's significantly higher behavior problems and lower social competence (Child Behavior Checklist). Increased professional attention to this vulnerable population is encouraged.

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          Journal
          1564035
          10.1097/00004583-199203000-00022

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