The Association of Parent Mindfulness with Parenting and Youth Psychopathology Across Three Developmental Stages

J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2016 Jan;44(1):191-202. doi: 10.1007/s10802-015-9978-x.


The primary purpose of the current study was to test a model examining the process by which parent dispositional mindfulness relates to youth psychopathology through mindful parenting and parenting practices. The universality of the model across youth at three developmental stages was examined: young childhood (3-7 years; n = 210), middle childhood (8-12 years; n = 200), and adolescence (13-17 years; n = 205). Overall, participants were 615 parents (55% female) and one of their 3-to-17 year old children (45% female). Parents reported on their dispositional mindfulness, mindful parenting, positive and negative parenting practices and their child's or adolescent's internalizing and externalizing problems. Consistent findings across all three developmental stages indicated that higher levels of parent dispositional mindfulness were indirectly related to lower levels of youth internalizing and externalizing problems through higher levels of mindful parenting and lower levels of negative parenting practices. Replication of these findings across families with children at different developmental stages lends support to the generalizability of the model.

Keywords: Child externalizing; Child internalizing; Mindful parenting; Mindfulness; Parenting.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child Behavior Disorders / psychology*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Internal-External Control*
  • Male
  • Mindfulness*
  • Parenting / psychology*