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Finding confidence and inner trust as a parent: experiences of group-based compassion-focused therapy for the parents of adolescents with mental health problems

Journal article
Authors A. S. Bratt
I. Svensson
Marie Rusner
Published in International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health and Well-being
Volume 14
Issue 1
ISSN 1748-2623
Publication year 2019
Published at Institute of Health and Care Sciences
Language en
Subject categories Medical Biotechnology


Purpose: Compassion-focused therapy (CFT) can alleviate the stress and challenges faced by the parents of adolescents with mental health (MH) problems. Although CFT interventions have shown promising results, few studies have examined its effectiveness in adolescent psychiatric settings. Therefore, this study examined the participant experiences of group-based CFT for the parents of adolescents with MH problems. Methods: The reflective lifeworld research (RLR) approach was used to conduct in-depth interviews with eleven parents, focusing on participant experiences of group-based CFT. Meaning-oriented data analysis was undertaken. Results: The essential meaning of the phenomenon of participating in group-based CFT was understood as finding confidence and inner trust as a parent, characterized by an understanding of one?s own needs, which provided parents with the confidence to support their children. The phenomenon is further explicated with its three constituents: (a) taking care of oneself and one?s child; (b) being open and sharing experiences; and (c) acceptance and hope for the future. Conclusions: The CFT intervention enabled parents to find their agency and strengthened their relationships with their children. The findings underscore the need to acknowledge the supportive role parents play in the recovery of children who receive psychiatric care.

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