Parents' Wishes and Expectations for Children with Chronic Conditions

Clara Wolman, Ann Garwick, Claire Kohrman, Robert Blum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This qualitative study investigated the wishes and expectations that parents had for their children with chronic physical health conditions. Participants included parents of 21 African American, 20 Hispanic, and 22 European American children. Results indicated that many parents' wishes were specifically related to the child's chronic condition, including that the condition would not exist, would be cured, or would improve. Other wishes focused on the psychosocial well-being of the child, independent living skills, education, having a family, behavioral issues, and religion. Although all of the wishes had a positive connotation, some of the expectations were positive and others were negative. Expectations were about the child's condition, the child's psychosocial well-being, independent living skills, education, and social concerns. Two characteristics of the chronic conditions, mental retardation and mobility impairment, affected the types of wishes that parents had. Differences among the three ethnocultural groups were noted in two types of wishes, education and behavioral issues, as well as in parents' expectations about social problems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-277
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Children
  • Chronic condition
  • Expectations
  • Parents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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