A cross-sectional study on intergenerational parenting and attachment patterns in adult children of parents with mental illness

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

The present study adds to the existing knowledge about adult children of parents with mental illness. The aim was to explore differences between adult children of parents with mental illness and parents in the general population on a range of adult relationship and parenting variables. Utilizing a cross‐sectional design, 86 adults across Australia participated in this study (47 general population; 39 adult children of parents with mental illness). Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and parametric tests. Adult children of parents with mental illness were found to be more permissive in their parenting compared with parents in the general population. However, between‐group differences were not found on measures of parenting competence, adult attachment, and relationship satisfaction. These findings suggest that adult children of parents with mental illness are able to thrive just as well as individuals in the general population but may require some support in the form of parental skills training. The paper concludes by highlighting the role of mental health professionals in the empowerment and resilience building of adult children of parents with mental illness.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9
JournalChild and Family Social Work
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 4 Apr 2019

Keywords

  • adult children of parents with mental illness
  • attachment
  • parenting competence
  • parenting style
  • relationship satisfaction

Cite this

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title = "A cross-sectional study on intergenerational parenting and attachment patterns in adult children of parents with mental illness",
abstract = "The present study adds to the existing knowledge about adult children of parents with mental illness. The aim was to explore differences between adult children of parents with mental illness and parents in the general population on a range of adult relationship and parenting variables. Utilizing a cross‐sectional design, 86 adults across Australia participated in this study (47 general population; 39 adult children of parents with mental illness). Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and parametric tests. Adult children of parents with mental illness were found to be more permissive in their parenting compared with parents in the general population. However, between‐group differences were not found on measures of parenting competence, adult attachment, and relationship satisfaction. These findings suggest that adult children of parents with mental illness are able to thrive just as well as individuals in the general population but may require some support in the form of parental skills training. The paper concludes by highlighting the role of mental health professionals in the empowerment and resilience building of adult children of parents with mental illness.",
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author = "Patrick, {Pamela M.} and Reupert, {Andrea E.} and McLean, {Louise A.}",
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AB - The present study adds to the existing knowledge about adult children of parents with mental illness. The aim was to explore differences between adult children of parents with mental illness and parents in the general population on a range of adult relationship and parenting variables. Utilizing a cross‐sectional design, 86 adults across Australia participated in this study (47 general population; 39 adult children of parents with mental illness). Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and parametric tests. Adult children of parents with mental illness were found to be more permissive in their parenting compared with parents in the general population. However, between‐group differences were not found on measures of parenting competence, adult attachment, and relationship satisfaction. These findings suggest that adult children of parents with mental illness are able to thrive just as well as individuals in the general population but may require some support in the form of parental skills training. The paper concludes by highlighting the role of mental health professionals in the empowerment and resilience building of adult children of parents with mental illness.

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KW - parenting style

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