Sibling Relationships and Parental Interventions to Sibling Bullying During Covid-19: A Qualitative Comparison of British and Turkish Families of Autistic Adolescents

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Background and aims: Despite its high potential for affecting sibling relationships, few studies have explored the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on this important family dynamic. Of these, the reported evidence has been inconsistent across cultures and lacks cross-cultural comparability. For the first time, we investigated cross-cultural variability in the impact of Covid-19, and the restrictions associated with it, on sibling relationships of autistic adolescents from a Western (United Kingdom) and non-Western (Turkey) country. We also explored how British and Turkish parents intervene in negative sibling interactions –i.e., sibling bullying –when witnessed. Methods: Parents of 164 British and 96 Turkish autistic adolescents, aged 9-20 years, were asked how they perceived the effects of Covid-19 on their children's sibling relationships, andhow they were most likely to react to instances of sibling bullying. Free response data from parents were analysed using qualitative content analysis. Results: Our findings indicated more cross-cultural similarities than differences between British and Turkish families. The majority of both British and Turkish parents indicated that Covid-19 worsened sibling relationships between their autistic and non-autistic children. An overwhelming majority of British and Turkish parents also said that they would step in directly when witnessing sibling bullying. Despite the high volume of cross-cultural similarities generally, we also found some cross-cultural differences, for instance in relation to the most common negative impact of Covid-19 on sibling relationships and the most preferred parental responses to sibling bullying. Conclusions and implication: Implications and suggestions are discussed in more detail, drawing on the Etic approach to cross-cultural psychology
Original languageEnglish
PublisherPsyArXiv Preprints
Publication statusPublished - May 2023

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NamePsyArXiv Preprints

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