Few studies have been conducted about male caregivers in general and even fewer about male caregivers who provide care for their relative's child when the child is in the custody of the child welfare or child- and family-serving systems. This exploratory study examined the motivations, parenting capacity, readiness, stress and strain, family support, and perceptions of child well-being of male caregivers and compared their experiences with those of their female counterparts. The study also compared the experiences of caregivers in different family roles (i.e., adult siblings, grandparents, aunts/uncles) to determine if gender differences exist. Results show a high level of capacity and ability of male caregivers and a relatively low level of stress and strain. Significant differences were not gender-defined; instead, as it pertains to caregiver capacity, stress and strain, and perceptions of child well-being, differences were distinguishable by such sociodemographic characteristics as marital status, educational attainment, number of children being cared for, ethnicity, and income. Practice, policy and research recommendations are offered.
- Child welfare
- Kinship care
- Male caregivers
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science