Parental burnout across the globe during the COVID-19 pandemic

Hedwig Van Bakel*, Coco Bastiaansen, Ruby Hall, Inga Schwabe, Emmie Verspeek, James J. Gross, Julie Ackerlund Brandt, Joyce Aguiar, Ege Akgun, Gizem Arikan, Kaisa Aunola, Zdenka Bajgarová, Wim Beyers, Zuzana Bílková, Emilie Boujut, Bin-bin Chen, Géraldine Dorard, Maria Josefina Escobar, Kaichiro Furutani, Maria Filomena GasparAnnette Griffith, Mai Helmy, Mai Trang Huynh, Emérence Kaneza, Roberto Andres Lasso Báez, Astrid Lebert, Sarah Le Vigouroux, Yanhee Lee, Hong Dao Mai, Denisse Manrique-millones, Rosa Bertha Millones Rivalles, Marina Miscioscia, Seyyedeh Fatemeh Mousavi, Munseol Eom, Alexis Ndayizigiy, Josue Ngnombouowo Tenkue, Daniela Oyarce Cadiz, Claudia Pineda-marin, Maria Psychountaki, Yang Qu, Fernando Salinas-quiroz, María Pía Santelices, Celine Scola, Charlotte Schrooyen, Paola Silva Cabrera, Alessandra Simonelli, Aelita Skarbalienė, Egidijus Skarbalius, Bart Soenens, Matilda Sorkkila, Cara Swit, Dorota Szczygieł, George Theotokatos, Ayse Meltem Ustundag-budak, Lesley Verhofstadt, Dana Vertsberger, Jacqueline Wendland, Moïra Mikolajczak, Isabelle Roskam

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all societies worldwide. The heightened levels of stress that accompanied the crisis were also expected to affect parenting in many families. Since it is known that high levels of stress in the parenting domain can lead to a condition that has severe consequences for health and well-being, we examined whether the prevalence of parental burnout in 26 countries (9,923 parents; 75% mothers; mean age 40) increased during COVID-19 compared to few years before the pandemic. In most (but not all) countries, analyses showed a significant increase in the prevalence of parental burnout during the pandemic. The results further revealed that next to governmental measures (e.g., number of days locked down, homeschooling) and factors at the individual and family level (e.g., gender, number of children), parents in less (vs. more) indulgent countries suffered more from parental burnout. The findings suggest that stricter norms regarding their parenting roles and duties in general and during the pandemic in particular might have increased their levels of parental burnout.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-152
JournalInternational Perspectives in Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2022


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