Are you coping how I'm coping? An exploratory factor analysis of the Brief-COPE among caregivers of children with and without learning disabilities during COVID-19 restrictions in the UK

Freyja Steindorsdottir, Karen Goodall, Hope Christie, Doug McConachie, Jo Van Herwegen, Carrie Ballantyne, Caroline Richards, Hayley Crawford, Laura Outhwaite, Thomas Gallagher-Mitchell, Joanna Moss, Grace R. Khawam, Karri Gillespie-Smith*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

Introduction: The current study aimed to answer the following questions: (1) What factor structures emerge to responses to the brief-COPE in a post-pandemic population of caregivers of children under 18 in the UK? (2) What differences, if any, are there in coping between parents of children with and without Learning Disabilities during COVID-19 restrictions?

Method: An exploratory factor analysis was conducted across a sample of parents of children with and without learning disabilities. Following this, differences between responses on each factor were assessed with Mann Whitney U tests.

Results: The analysis recovered 6 factors across the whole sample: External support-seeking, emotion-focused disengagement, positive cognitive reframing, substance use, religion, and problem-focused disengagement. These structures are largely in line with previous findings. Significant differences were found between groups on the emotion-focused disengagement factor, with parents of children with Learning Disabilities scoring significantly higher on measures of self-blame, denial and one venting item.

Conclusion: These findings suggest some consistency in recovered factor structures of the Brief-COPE. Further work exploring the role of emotion-focused disengagement in caregivers of children with Learning Disabilities could provide further insight into what support may need to be made available in this group.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Developmental Disabilities
Early online date4 Jun 2024
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 4 Jun 2024

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • learning disabilities
  • caregivers
  • coping
  • BriefCOPE
  • mental health

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