A structural model of family empowerment for families of children with special needs

Kuem Sun Han, Yunkyung Yang, Yeong Seon Hong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Aims and objectives: To explain and predict family empowerment in families of children with special needs. Background: Family empowerment of families of children with special needs can be explained using the Double ABCX model. Although constant stressors such as parenting stress and family demands can have negative effects on family empowerment, family resources and parenting efficacy can mediate the negative effect through effective coping strategies. Design: A cross-sectional research design was employed. Methods: A survey was conducted with 240 parents of children with special needs. Upon exclusion of four responses deemed inadequate to the statistics process, 236 responses were selected for the analysis. Based on the items used in the previous research, we used the scale of family demands 38, the scale of parenting stress 24, the scale of parenting efficacy 37, the scale of pattern of organisation 30, the scale of communication process 16 and the scale of family empowerment 32. Results: In families of children with special needs, parenting stress had a negative effect on parenting efficacy and family resources, namely, pattern of organisation and communication process. Family needs had a positive effect on parenting efficacy. Parenting stress and family demands influenced family empowerment through parenting efficacy and family resources (pattern of organisation and communication process), while parenting efficacy contributed to family empowerment. Conclusions: This study empirically analysed the usefulness of the Double ABCX model in predicting family empowerment. Family resource factors (organisation pattern and communication process) and perception or judgement factors (such as parenting efficacy) were found to mediate the negative impact of various stressors experienced by families of children with special needs. Relevance to clinical practice: The study findings suggest that clinical practice and management should focus on providing efficient intervention methods to lower stress in families of children with special needs. Reinforcing factors contributing to family empowerment, such as parenting efficacy, organisation pattern and communication process, will alleviate families’ stress, resulting in a positive educational and developmental impact on children with special needs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e833-e844
JournalJournal of Clinical Nursing
Issue number5-6
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Mar

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd


  • children with special needs
  • double ABCX model
  • family empowerment
  • parenting efficacy
  • structural model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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