Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

MA in Child Development


Parents and caregivers who are able to understand their own mental states are better able to hold a child’s mental states in mind, an important consideration for moderating negative perceptions of ADHD behavior. In this thesis, I discuss how mentalizing-focused treatment for parents and caregivers strengthens attachment bonds in families where a child is diagnosed with ADHD. I explore the effectiveness of mentalizing-focused treatment to parents, some of whom experience difficulty in understanding their own mental states, and all of whom experience challenges in interpreting the intentions and mental states of their children, particularly in families where a child has been diagnosed with ADHD. In addition, I define how mentalizing relates to the important developmental theories, including attachment, as a means of promoting autonomy and resilience for a child as well as the potential negative effects when mentalizing breaks down.

Included in

Psychology Commons