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Title: Mindfulness, attachment & adoptive parenting: is there a connection?
Author: Glossop, Andrew
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2013
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Over the last twenty years, mindfulness and sel f-compassion have been found to cultivate wellbeing. The potential benefits of mindful ne ss and self-compassion have been explored in relation to interpersonal relationships. Despite the growing body of research to support the application of mindfulness and self-compassion in the development of interpersonal relationships, these two constructs have only recently been researched in relation to attachment theory. One population who experience high rates of attachment-related difficulties are adoptive families which can increase adoptive parents' levels of stress. Over the last few years, mindfulness and self-compassion have been theoretical and empirically associated with the parenting role, although no research has explored these in relation to adoptive parenting and adoptive parenting stress. The review paper systematically evaluates the research conducted on mindfulness and attachment. The review identifies a consistently reported finding of a significant relationship between mindfulness and adult attachment security. The review also identifies the limited number of studies which have investigated mindfulness-based interventions and attachments. The methodological limitations of the studies are highlighted. The paper concludes that these studies provide clear evidence for exploring the relationship between mindfulness and attachment further and provides recommendations for research to extend this empirical base. The empirical paper investigates the relationship between mindfulness, self-compassion and adoptive parenting stress. Adoptive parents completed a web-based survey which measured levels of mindfulness, self-compassion and parenting stress alongside factors associated with adoptive parenting stress, including attachment-related difficulties. The results identified a significant relationship between mindfulness, self-compassion and adoptive parenting stress. A complex model of adoptive parenting stress is reported which highlights the significant role of attachment-related difficulties, mindfulness and parental mental health. The paper recommends the development of multifaceted approaches to support adoptive parents and that mindfulness is an avenue which requires further research in relation to adoptive parenting stress.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available