Talking with parents of children with learning disabilities: Parents’ ideas about the Circle of Security parenting programme

Sarah Muddle, Jennifer McElwee, Regine Vincent, Nicola Birdsey, Lara Best

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The Circle of Security Parenting (COS-P) programme can be helpful for some parents of children with learning disabilities to think about their relationship with their child. Parenting a child with learning disabilities is different, and COS-P can highlight this difference. This can feel painful for parents and may stop them engaging with the programme. Abstract: Background Background: The promotion of secure attachment relationships in childhood leads to better outcomes in later life (British Psychological Society 2017, Incorporating Attachment Theory into Practice: Clinical Practice Guideline for Clinical Psychologists Working with People who have Intellectual Disabilities). The Circle of Security Parenting Programme (COS-P) provides a clear framework for reflecting on attachment relationships (Cooper et al 2009, Zero to Three, 37, 27). Methods Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with parents of children with learning disabilities who attended a COS-P programme to find out about their experiences of the course and how applicable it was to them. The data were analysed using thematic analysis. Findings Findings: Four key themes were identified: these related to (1) COS-P concepts are relevant to all children but (2) parenting a child with a learning disability is different and (3) COS-P can create a focus on their child as different, which can be painful, and (4) changes recommended to make COS-P suitable for parents of children with learning disabilities. Conclusions Conclusions: This paper outlines the benefits and challenges of COS-P in sharing concepts related to attachment, whilst highlighting differences for parents of children and young people with learning disabilities, which can be painful.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-28
Number of pages10
JournalBritish Journal Of Learning Disabilities
Volume50
Issue number1
Early online date3 Feb 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Jan 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Phychiatric Mental Health
  • Pediatrics

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Talking with parents of children with learning disabilities: Parents’ ideas about the Circle of Security parenting programme'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this