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Keywords:

  • mothers;
  • eating disorders;
  • children;
  • parenting

Abstract

Objective

This paper reports the development and preliminary evaluation of a group intervention for mothers with eating disorders who have pre-school children.

Method

This study aimed to define and clarify intervention components, and make a preliminary assessment of the feasibility, acceptability and potential for achieving clinical change of the group intervention.

Results

An eight-session group intervention was developed and piloted with four or five participants in each of three trials. Feedback demonstrated that the majority of participants tolerated and valued this type of intervention, and felt it had a positive impact on parenting skills and confidence. Preliminary evaluation suggested reduction in parenting concerns and improved depression scores following group participation.

Discussion

The groups revealed a range of difficulties experienced by such mothers. An intervention designed to address the identified issues could have important beneficial effects on child development and provide a valuable means of support to this patient group. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.