Research Article| Volume 14, ISSUE 6, P369-378, December 1999

Out of their element: Fathers of children who are “not the same”

  • Steven L. Baumann
    Address reprint requests to Steven L. Baumann, RN, PhD, CS, GNP, Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing, Hunter College of the City University of New York, 425 E 25th St, New York, NY 10010-2590.
    Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing, Hunter College of the City University of New York, NY

    Ingram Visiting Nurses, Lansing, MI, USA
    Search for articles by this author
  • Marybeth Braddick
    Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing, Hunter College of the City University of New York, NY

    Ingram Visiting Nurses, Lansing, MI, USA
    Search for articles by this author
      This paper is only available as a PDF. To read, Please Download here.
      The purpose of this research was to ascertain the meaning of fathering for fathers of children with congenital anomalies. The human becoming theory was the theoretical perspective for this descriptive-exploratory study. Findings showed that fathering for these participants is a desire to grasp the situation, mingled with disturbing feelings, while facing one's limits and gives rise to comforting views. Comfortable-uncomfortable ways of being with others emerge as fathering shifts one from the familiar to the unfamiliar, surfacing the joy-sorrow of the always-changing “now” and the unpredictable “not yet.” Implications for further research and practice are also discussed.
      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'


        • Baumann S.
        No place of their own: An exploratory study.
        Nursing Science Quarterly. 1994; 7: 162-169
        • Baumann S.
        Parse's research methodology and the nurse researcher-child process.
        Nursing Science Quarterly. 1996; 9: 27-32
        • Belsky J.
        • Kelly J.
        The transition to parenthood: How a first child changes a marriage.
        Delacorte Press, New York1994
        • Biller H.B.
        Fathers and families: Paternal factors in child development.
        Auburn House, Westport, CT1993
        • Coltane S.
        Birth timing & the division of labor: Dual-earner families.
        Journal of Family Issues. 1990; 11: 157-181
        • Cummings S.T.
        The impact of the child's deficiency on the father: A study of fathers of mentally retarded and of chronically ill and neurotic children.
        American Journal of Orthopsychiatry. 1976; 46: 246-255
        • Colman A.
        • Colman L.
        The father: Mythology and changing roles. Chiron Publications, Wilmette, IL1988
        • Dollahite D.C.
        • Hawkins A.J.
        • Brotherson S.E.
        Fatherwork: A conceptual ethic of fathering as generative work.
        in: Hawkins A.J. Dollahite D.C. Generative fathering: Beyond deficit perspectives. Sage Publications, Thousand Oaks, CA1996
        • Ell K.
        Social networks, social support and coping with serious illness: The family connection.
        Social Science Medicine. 1996; 42: 173-183
        • Erikson E.H.
        The life cycle completed.
        Norton, New York1982
        • Gave M.
        Big hearts for little hearts.
        Parents. 1985; 61: 282-288
        • Heaman D.J.
        Perceived stressors and coping strategies of parents who have children with developmental disabilities: A comparison of mothers and fathers.
        Journal of Pediatric Nursing. 1995; 10: 311-320
        • Jones T.
        The Fantasticks.
        Avon Books, New York1964
        • Kazak A.E.
        Family stress and social support networks: An analysis of families with handicapped children. 1983Unpublished doctoral dissertation. University of Virginia, Charlottesville1983
        • Kelman H.R.
        The effects of a group of noninstitutionalized mongoloid children upon their families as perceived by their mothers.
        in: Unpublished doctoral dissertation. New York University, New York1959
        • Kimmel M.
        Manhood in America: A cultural history.
        Free Press, New York1996
        • Kramm E.R.
        Reactions and patterns of adjustment of the family to its mongoloid child.
        in: Unpublished doctoral dissertation. University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA1958
        • Lamb M.E.
        Fatherhood and family policy.
        Erlbaum, Hilldale, NJ1983
      1. ([Translation R.A. Cohen])
        • levinas E.
        Time and the other.
        Dusquesne University Press, Pittsburgh, PA1987
        • Mauldon J.
        Children's risk of experiencing divorce and remarriage: Do disabled children destabilize marriages?.
        Population Studies. 1992; 46: 349-362
        • Moore K.L.
        • Persaud T.V.N.
        Before we are born: Essentials of embryology and birth defects.
        Saunders, Philadelphia1996
        • Morrison A.P.
        The culture of shame.
        Ballantine, New York1996
        • Osherson S.
        The passions of fatherhood.
        Fawcett Columbus, New York1995
        • Parke R.D.
        • Anderson E.R.
        Fathers and their at-risk infants: Conceptual and empirical analysis.
        in: Berman P.W. Pedersen F.A. Men's transitions to parenthood: Longitudinal studies of early family experiences. Erlbaum, New York1987
        • Parke R.D.
        • Beitel A.
        Disappointment: When things go wrong in the transition to parenthood.
        Marriage and Family Review. 1988; 12: 221-265
        • Parse R.R.
        Man-living-health: A theory of nursing.
        John Wiley & Sons, New York1981
        • Parse R.R.
        Human Becoming: Parse's Theory of Nursing.
        Nursing Science Quarterly. 1992; 5: 35-42
        • Parse R.R.
        Quality of life for persons living with Alzheimer's disease: The human becoming perspective.
        Nursing Science Quarterly. 1996; 9: 126-133
        • Parse R.R.
        • Coyne A.B.
        • Smith M.J.
        Nursing research: Qualitative methods.
        Brady, Bowie, MD1985
        • Ricoeur P.
        The conflict of interpretation: Essays in hermeneutics. Northwestern University Press, Evanston, IL1974: 468-497
        • Savitz D.A.
        • Schwingl P.J.
        • Keels M.A.
        Influence of paternal age, smoking, and alcohol consumption on congenital anomalies.
        Teratology. 1991; 44: 429-440
        • Seaburn D.B.
        • Lorenz A.
        • Kaplan D.
        The transgenerational development of chronic illness meanings.
        Family Systems Medicine. 1992; 10: 385-394
        • Snarey J.
        How fathers care for the next generation: A four-decade study.
        Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA1993
        • Sterns P.N.
        Fatherhood in historical perspective: The role of social change.
        in: Rripp-Reimer T. Wilson S.E. Cross-cultural perspectives on fatherhood. Springer, New York1991: 28-52
        • Taylor C.
        Sources of the self: The making of the modern identity.
        Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA1989
        • Thomas D.L.
        • Draper T.
        The empirical moment with an ethical beginning for the behavioral and social sciences.
        in: Paper presented at the annual meetings of the Association of Jewish Studies, Boston, MA. 1992
        • Trivers R.C.
        Parental investment & sexual selection; 1871–1971.
        in: Campbell B. Sexual selection and the descent of map. Aldrin, Chicago1972: 136-179
        • Waisbren S.E.
        Parents' reactions after the birth of a developmentally disabled child.
        American Journal of Mental Deficients. 1980; 84: 345-351
        • Wright C.A.
        The relationship between self-reported stress and coping strategies during early parenting.
        in: Unpublished doctoral dissertation. Oregon State University, Corvallis1985
        • Vanier J.
        Eruption to hope.
        Griffin House, Toronto1971
        • Volling B.L.
        • Belsky J.
        Multiple determinants of father involvement during infancy in dual-earner and single-earner families.
        Journal of Marriage and the Family. 1991; 53: 460-474
        • Zvonkovic A.M.
        • Greaves K.M.
        • Schmiege C.J.
        • Hall L.D.
        The marital construction of gender through work and family decisions: A qualitative analysis.
        Journal of Marrigae and the Family. 1996; 58: 91-100