M18-2013+Parenting+incarceration_8+Feb+2014.doc - Title...

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Title Paradoxical Correlates of a Facilitative Parenting Programme in Prison – Counterproductive Intervention or First Signs of Responsible Parenthood? Abstract Purpose: Parenting programmes are rarely part of prisoners' rehabilitation, and evaluations of such programmes are lacking. Methods: The present mixed methods study investigates the International Child Development Programme (ICDP) with 25 incarcerated fathers and a comparison group of 36 community fathers through questionnaires administered before and after parenting courses. Interviews with 20 incarcerated fathers were analysed using thematic analysis. Results: Before the course, the prison group self-reported better parenting skills and poorer psychosocial health than the comparison group. Both groups improved on parenting strategies. On several measures the comparison group improved while the prison group revealed the same or lower scores. The incarcerated fathers described becoming more aware of their paternal role but also saw the course as emotionally challenging. Conclusions: Some of the self-reported scores of the prison participants related to parental skills and psychosocial health decreased from before to after ICDP sensitisation, pointing to the possibility that the ICDP courses may have contributed to overcoming a “prisonization process” where the prisoner identity shadows the parental identity by making them more aware of their parental responsibilities. Due to the emerging possibility of counterproductive influences, a randomized controlled study is needed in the future to ascertain the parenting and recidivism related effects of this programme. Keywords: Parenting interventions; ICDP; Evaluation; Incarcerated fathers, Prisonization 1
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Introduction Research suggests that parenthood is important for incarcerated parents in their hope for – and expected possible selves (Meek, 2011, p. 941). However, incarceration and separation from the family may imply less interaction with children and fewer possibilities for learning to adapt, resulting in parents with diminished emotional and physical well-being ( Houck & Loper, 2002 , p. 548). Identity, comprising a set of internalized meanings applied to the self in a social role or as member of a social group that define who one is (Burke & Tully, 1977, p. 881-897), may be affected by incarceration by interfering with prisoners’ ability to conduct meaningful identity behaviours and carry out reflected appraisals (Burke, 1991, p. 840). This institutional-made process has been called “prisonization” (Clemmer, 1940 p. 1-341; for an overview, see Dyer, Pleck & McBride, 2012, 20-47). The separation and inability to provide daily parental care are likely to make parents in prison repress or decrease the commitment to this part of their identity in order to reduce stress (Arditti, Smock & Parkman, 2005, p. 267- 288). The prisoner role becomes most prominent, shadowing other roles (Dyer, Wardle, & Day, 2004).
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  • Spring '14
  • AntonioBaez
  • The Giver, comparison group, ICDP

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