Mothers who experience difficulty in childrearing are becoming increasingly more prevalent in Japan. This study described and classified mothers' childrearing difficulty in terms of their children's behavioral characteristics and related factors. Self-administered questionnaires were distributed to 818 mothers at their children's 3-year-old health checkup in eight suburban cities in Japan. The questionnaire consisted of items assessing the mother's experience of difficulty in childrearing for the child undergoing the checkup. The subjects were classified into four groups according to their children's behavioral characteristics: "low needs," "internalizing behavior," "externalizing behavior," and "comorbid internalizing-externalizing behavior." Multiple regression analysis was performed to examine the relationships between mothers' difficulty in childrearing and related factors. A total of 775 respondents were divided as follows: 332 mothers had children with low needs, 104 had those with internalizing behavior, 230 had those with externalizing behavior, and 109 had those with comorbid internalizing-externalizing behavior. Mothers in the low needs group showed less childrearing difficulty than did mothers in the other groups. Childrearing difficulty increased by group in the following order: internalizing, externalizing, and comorbid internalizing-externalizing. In all four groups, mothers with low self-efficacy and less appraisal support from their family encountered greater childrearing difficulty. In the low needs group, experiencing childrearing difficulty with another child was related experiencing childrearing difficulty with the child undergoing the checkup. In the internalizing behavior group, mothers who had experienced greater difficulty in childrearing were more likely to be housewives and of younger age, and were more likely to have had boys as the child undergoing the checkup. In the externalizing behavior group, mothers with more difficulty in childrearing were more likely to be younger and less healthy, have less appraisal support from their friends, and live in apartments. In the comorbid internalizing-externalizing group, if the mothers were housewives, they were more likely to have difficulty in caring for their other children, receive less appraisal support from their friends, and experience more difficulty in childrearing. The results showed that mothers' difficulty in childrearing and the factors related to this difficulty differed according to their children's behavioral characteristics. Public health nurses could provide more effective care and support to mothers by considering children's behavioral characteristics.
|Number of pages||13|
|Journal||[Nihon kōshū eisei zasshi] Japanese journal of public health|
|Publication status||Published - 2014 Jan|
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