This study was conducted to determine whether support provided to caregivers by their adult children with mental retardation would influence caregiving appraisals. We also examined how severity of disability of the adult child, personal and social resources of the caregiver, and amount of caregiver assistance to the adult with mental retardation influenced caregiving appraisals. Using surveys and interviews we collected information from 80 primary caregivers on caregiving burden and satisfaction and six predictors of burden and satisfaction. Findings indicate that greater support from the adult child to the caregiver resulted in greater satisfaction and less burden. Adaptive and maladaptive behaviors and caregiving assistance all predicted caregiving satisfaction but only maladaptive behaviors predicted caregiving burden.

Preparation of this article was supported, in part, by the Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Aging with Mental Retardation, University of Illinois at Chicago, through Grant No. H133B30069 from the US. Department of Education, National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research.

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