University of Hertfordshire


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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)731-744
JournalJournal of Marital and Family Therapy
Journal publication date4 Oct 2016
Early online date13 Jun 2016
Publication statusPublished - 4 Oct 2016


This Grounded Theory study explored parents’ experiences of responding to their children’s need for understanding parental mental health concerns. Fifteen parents with severe and enduring mental health difficulties participated in the study. The findings suggest four main social processes that influence parents’ talk with their children about parental mental health issues, namely: “Protecting and being protected”, “Responding to children’s search for understanding”, “Prioritizing family life” and “Relating to others.” Implications of the findings for clinical practice and future research are considered. In particular, the need for more family-orientated services where parents experience parental mental health problems is highlighted.


© 2016 American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy This is the pre-peer review version of the following article: Nolte, L. and Wren, B. (2016), ‘Talking or keeping silent about parental mental health problems—A grounded theory of parents' decision making and experiences with their children’, Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 42, 731–744, which has been published in final form at doi: 10.1111/jmft.12177. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.

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