Parents urged to give themselves some loving

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The struggle of parenting is real, but are mothers and fathers making the situation worse by failing to give themselves sufficient credit?

University of Queensland School of Psychology’s Dr James Kirby has commenced a new study to examine the link between self-compassion and parenting.

“Self-compassion is a helpful mindset to take when confronted with life’s problems,” Dr Kirby said.

“Cultivating loving kindness towards yourself improves your ability to cope with day-to-day stress.

“Getting caught up in the struggle often makes situations worse and less manageable.”

The free study asks parents of children aged 2-12 to complete questionnaires about parenting, child behaviour and stress.

Parents are also asked to complete an audio-guided self-compassion meditation.

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Altogether the study takes approximately 60 minutes to complete at UQ St Lucia campus’s Parenting and Family Support Centre.

“Though we know the benefits of self-compassion in other scenarios, little to no research has been done in the parenting sphere until now,” Dr Kirby said.

“If we can establish a firmer understanding, it offers us a new way to help make the job of modern day parenting that little bit easier.”

Dr Kirby and project assistant Sarah Baldwin, an honours student within the School of Psychology, are looking for 100 parents in total for the study.

Those willing to participate can contact Ms Baldwin on or by phoning the Parenting and Family Support Centre on (07) 3365 7290.

(Source: The University of Queensland)

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Date Created: June 6, 2015