Sibling relationships when one sibling has ASD: A preliminary investigation to inform the field and strengthen the bond


All sibling relationships are unique and experience differing degrees of success as the ebb and flow of the relationship changes over time. When such a relationship exists between a person with and without an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), the relationship may potentially have higher levels or occurrences of both positive and/or negative relationship attributes. This study sought to identify predictors of a stronger relationship and any possible risk factors concerning or straining to the relationship between siblings with and without ASD. Results indicated that empathy and acceptance were the two most reported coping strategies used across all siblings, that older siblings were found to hold a better understanding of autism, and that older siblings engaged in more negative relationship coping strategies. Discussion of limitations and suggestions regarding future research are included.

Publication Title

Children and Youth Services Review