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Reflective parenting

This service offers an intervention for parents experiencing difficulties in their relationships with their children.


Based on the acclaimed book Reflective Parenting, the service helps parents struggling with their relationship with their children. It also offers training on the model to future group facilitators.

The Reflective Parenting model introduces an approach to parenting that aims to promote family relationships and reduce parent-child conflicts. Parents can expect to develop a better understanding of their child’s emotions and behaviours, helping the child to feel both understood and of value. The approach also helps to de-escalate difficult situations and reduces behavioural and emotional outbursts. Reflective Parenting is a model of parenting based on theoretical ideas from mentalization – the ability of a parent to understand the thoughts, feelings and intentions behind the behaviour of both themselves and their child. 

There is extensive evidence about the importance of understanding the intentions behind a child’s behaviour and getting a greater sense of your own mind as a parent in relation to them. Research also suggests that understanding the thoughts, feelings and intentions behind your child’s behaviour and your own reaction can act as a buffer against difficult behaviour and can help your child regulate their emotions better. This can then lead to improved relationships and enhanced understanding of self and others.

Reflective Parenting group structure and content 

The Reflective Parenting Group is an 8-week closed group (meaning people can’t drop in and out) for a maximum of 12 participants. The group provides both psychoeducation (there are slides and discussion points) and active support (sharing stories and struggles as well as successes with other parents). To learn more about the Group, please check our service leaflet.

Who this group is for?

We are currently running this group for Special Guardians, facilitated by two highly experienced clinicians.


We are able to run most groups at no cost thanks to the generous support of one of our donors, the Maria Marina Foundation. A minority of the groups are self-funded.

Please contact  for further information and to find out when the next group will be on offer.

For professionals - we also offer training in Reflective Parenting.

Contact us  

For further information on attending a Reflective Parenting Group, please contact the Clinical Lead for Reflective Parenting, Dr Sheila Redfern at

Sheila Redfern

Sheila Redfern

Clinical Lead for Reflective Parenting