The effects of social support on the well -being of mothers with children in early intervention

Kelly Ann Brown, Fordham University


The effects social support on subjective well-being were examined among 195 mothers of children with developmental delays and/or disabilities, birth to age three, enrolled in early intervention programs in southern New Jersey. The Social Systems-Social Support Framework was used as the conceptual model for assessing the relationship among informal and formal social support and maternal well-being, as defined by positive affect, negative affect, and life satisfaction. Three separate 5 step hierarchical regression analyses were conducted with variable sets (mother, child, program, informal social support, and formal social support) entered according to the Social Systems-Social Support Framework. For positive affect, child, informal social support, and formal social support variable sets were significant predictors. The final model that included all variable sets showed that this was the best model fit for positive affect. As for negative affect, mother, child, program, and informal social support were significant predictor sets. Life satisfaction results show that mother and informal social support were the only significant predictor sets. Informal social support variables showed significance in all outcome variables. Satisfaction with informal social support networks was related to higher positive affect, lower negative affect, and higher life satisfaction of mothers. The results are discussed in terms of the important implications of different ecological variable sets and social support variable sets on the subjective well-being of mothers with children enrolled in early intervention programs.

Subject Area

Social psychology|Developmental psychology

Recommended Citation

Brown, Kelly Ann, "The effects of social support on the well -being of mothers with children in early intervention" (2001). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9999819.