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Parenting Challenges for Persons with a Serious Mental Illness

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Part of the Social Work book series (SOWO)


Up to a quarter of people with a lived experience of serious mental illness are parents. Parents with serious mental illness face considerable challenges managing the demands of their illness and day-to-day parenting roles and responsibilities. A lack of resources to cope with parenting tasks, stigma of mental illness, psychiatric symptoms, and side effects of medications can affect parenting abilities. In addition, psychosocial adversities including lower education and employment opportunities, due to the impact of mental illness and parenting duties, can negatively impact the quality of life of families affected by parental mental illness. Studies show that children affected by parental mental illness have a higher risk of developing emotional, psychological, and behavioral problems and sometimes take on caring responsibilities for their parents. It is increasingly recognized that family-focussed support services are required to meet the needs of these families and that providing appropriate support can contribute to the recovery journey of parents with mental illness and well-being of the whole family.


  • Families
  • Parenting
  • Children of parents with mental illness
  • Psychiatric illness

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Correspondence to Linda Campbell .

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© 2020 Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd.

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Campbell, L., Poon, A.W.C. (2020). Parenting Challenges for Persons with a Serious Mental Illness. In: Ow, R., Poon, A. (eds) Mental Health and Social Work. Social Work. Springer, Singapore.

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  • Publisher Name: Springer, Singapore

  • Print ISBN: 978-981-13-0440-8

  • Online ISBN: 978-981-13-0440-8

  • eBook Packages: Springer Reference Biomedicine & Life SciencesReference Module Biomedical and Life Sciences