, Volume 19, Issue 2, pp 167-174
Date: 05 Mar 2009

Training in Mindful Caregiving Transfers to Parent–Child Interactions

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Abstract

In an earlier study, we provided mindfulness training to three caregivers of individuals with profound multiple disabilities. We measured levels of happiness displayed by the individuals during the 8 weeks of mindfulness training of the caregivers, as well as during the 16 weeks following the termination of training. We found that happiness increased markedly when an individual interacted with a caregiver who had received training in mindfulness as opposed to a control caregiver who did not receive such training. In this study, we investigated whether the increased mindfulness of the three caregivers would transfer to interactions with their own children. The children’s non-compliance with their mother’s requests was used as an indirect index of the effects of training their mothers received in mindfulness. Although the ages of the children and their baseline levels of non-compliance were variable, the data showed a decrease in non-compliance during mindfulness training of the caregivers and further decreases following the completion of training. Our data provide preliminary evidence of transfer of mindfulness training from caregiving to parent–child interactions. We speculate as to why this may occur in mindfulness training.