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date: 04 March 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter is focused on the mother-child dyadic relationship in families where a young child has Down syndrome. Because mothers enter into a relationship with a child within a particular context, a sociocultural perspective on parenting a child with Down syndrome promotes a deeper understanding of interaction in the mother-child dyad. Both the role of the family system, including positive parenting, and the contributions of the child’s attributes, especially temperament, are considered. Specific literature on the mother-child dyad is discussed, including maternal language input, the role of maternal directives during structured and unstructured tasks, and studies on autonomy-supportive parenting. Suggestions for future research include developing studies that focus on maternal strengths as well as conducting investigations that recognize the importance of the sociocultural context in which mother-child dyadic relationships are developed.

Keywords: mother-child relationship, Down syndrome, temperament, positive parenting, autonomy, directives, stigma

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