Most research on parenting stress and abuse factors in parents of children with developmental disabilities has relied almost exclusively on Caucasian, middle-income, intact families. The current study investigated the generalizability of previous findings, examining the relations among parenting stress, abuse potential, and child's intellectual/adaptive functioning in a sample of low-income African American mothers of children with developmental delays. Thirty-three maternal caregivers completed the Child Abuse Potential Inventory and the Parenting Stress Index. Results indicated significant parenting stress, particularly aspects related to the child, as well as considerable physical abuse potential. Parenting stress was strongly correlated with abuse potential, particularly stress related to parental attributes. Neither parenting stress nor abuse potential were significantly correlated with the child's intellectual or adaptive functioning. Concerns regarding the appropriateness of these measures with this population and the need for controlled studies are discussed. © 1997 Sage Publications, Inc.