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Mental Health Professionals’ Perceptions of Parenting by Service Users with Psychosis

Journal article
Authors Jennifer Strand
Lisa Rudolfsson
Published in Community Mental Health Journal
ISSN 00103853
Publication year 2020
Published at Gothenburg Research Institute (GRI)
Department of Psychology
Language en
Links https://doi.org/10.1007/s10597-020-...
Keywords Parental psychosis, Parenting interventions, Professionals, Psychosis service, Service needs
Subject categories Applied Psychology, Psychology

Abstract

© 2020, The Author(s). Despite extensive needs, interventions for parents with psychosis are rarely offered, poorly described, and vary between offering instrumental and emotional support. To improve the design of interventions offered to families with parental psychosis, more knowledge is needed. The aim of this study was to gain knowledge about mental health professionals’ perceptions of parenting by patients with psychosis. Eleven mental health professionals educated in family interventions were interviewed using a semi-structured interview guide and the material underwent inductive thematic analysis. Results showed that the professionals described the patients parenting as characterized by difficulties in providing security and predictability, taking part in and organizing family life, and to focus on the child’s needs. The difficulties were described as related to specific symptoms such as voice hearing, cognitive impairments, anxiety, and paranoia. As a vast amount of research stresses the psychosocial basis of psychosis and the interpersonal causes of its symptoms, parenting difficulties in people with psychosis could benefit from being addressed from a relational perspective. Accordingly, parents with psychosis should be offered interventions that enable them to create positive parental role models, develop reflective functioning, and identify situations in which their symptoms might hinder positive parenting. Many of these needs are unmet by interventions offered in adult psychosis services today.

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