Family Functioning and Psychological Well-Being of Parents Raising Children with Hearing Impairment: A Case Study in Kericho County, Kenya

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International Journal of Research and Innovation in Social Science (IJRISS) | Volume V, Issue IX, September 2021 | ISSN 2454–6186

Family Functioning and Psychological Well-Being of Parents Raising Children with Hearing Impairment: A Case Study in Kericho County, Kenya

Nazarine Mbogo, Florence Githuthu (PhD), and Maria Ntaragwe
Department of Psychology, the Catholic University of Eastern Africa

IJRISS Call for paper

Abstract: Hearing loss may lead to diverse consequences that affect an individual’s quality of life. Parents with children who have any form of impairment bear the burden of providing effective care and support and this results to cases where they feel overwhelmed, disappointed and detached. The purpose of this study was to assess the family functioning on psychological well-being of parents raising children with hearing impairment in Kericho County, Kenya. The study was guided by the McMaster Model Family Functioning (MMFF) theory and it also reviewed the Family Systems theory and Olson Annular theory. Survey research design was used in the study. The target population of the study was 708 participants involving parents of children with hearing impairment and children with hearing impairment from Kericho County with a sample size 70 respondents including; parents and their children with hearing impairments. Data was collected using questionnaires. The findings of the study showed that communication patterns, affective responsiveness, problem-solving impacted on the wellbeing of participants. The study recommends that there should be common language for both the parents and children with hearing impairment in order to enhance effective communication hence parents to learn the Sign Language, to enable them communicate well with their children. The parents should learn how to express their affection to the child with hearing impairment and convey true feelings for their children with ease. Parents should involve children with hearing impairment in the problem solving process in issues that affect them directly. Parents should communicate the expected behaviour and be explicit about consequences that come along with non-compliance.

Key words: Psychological wellbeing, family functioning, hearing impairment.

I. BACKGROUND

Hearing impairment, is a condition that has existed throughout human history. Hearing impairment is manifested when the child has partial or complete loss of hearing capability. This may be inherited or acquired through childhood infections such as otitis media, meningoencephalitis or malnourishment that may cause lack of Vitamin A and Iodine mineral (Cole, E. &Flexer, 2019).
Hearing loss may lead to diverse consequences that affect an individual’s quality life, such as the ability to hear, communicate and also the economic independence of the affected persons (Briffa, Davidson, & Ferndale, 2016). Not only does hearing impairment affect the “self” but it also impacts heavily on the entire family, relations and