Psychological Distress and Well–Being of Latina and Non–Latina White Mothers of Youth and Adults with an Autism Spectrum Disorder: Cultural Attitudes Towards Coresidence Status


School of Social Work and Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin–Madison, 1500 Highland Avenue, Madison, WI 53705–2280. E-mail:


This article examined the emotional well–being of 108 Latina and non–Latina White mothers who were coresiding with a youth or adult with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). It was hypothesized that Latina mothers would be more satisfied with coresidence than non–Latina White mothers, and that satisfaction with coresidence would mediate the relationship between ethnicity and outcomes. When controlling for demographic characteristics. non–Latina White mothers were more distressed and had lower levels of psychological well–being than Latina mothers. As hypothesized, satisfaction with coresidence mediated this difference. Qualitative analysis revealed that both groups of mothers valued family cohesion as a positive aspect of coresidence. However, Latina mothers were less likely to report negative aspects of coresidence than non–Latina White mothers.