Parenting in the Context of Trauma: Dyadic Interventions for Trauma-Exposed Parents and Their Young Children

  • Megan M. JulianEmail author
  • Maria Muzik
  • Katherine Lisa Rosenblum
Part of the Integrating Psychiatry and Primary Care book series (IPPC)


Early caregiver-child relationships are foundational to early development and central to efforts to promote well-being and prevent psychopathology. We discuss how parenting can be affected by caregivers’ experience of trauma, and how children’s early relationships with caregivers contribute to their development and risk for psychopathology. Recent research suggests that the quality of caregiving moderates the effect of a child’s genetic risk for psychopathology. The protective role of sensitive caregiving is especially vital in the context of stress and trauma. Several psychotherapeutic interventions show promise in ameliorating the types of caregiver-child relationship difficulties that are common among trauma-exposed parents and their young children. These interventions have been found to be effective in increasing the rates of secure attachment and sensitive caregiving, and reducing early psychopathology. Emerging evidence suggests some interventions may be associated with changes to parents’ neural circuitry that underlies sensitive caregiving. Relationship-based psychotherapeutic interventions are promising in the promotion of well-being and prevention of psychopathology in at-risk families.



T32 postdoctoral fellowship funding (HD079350; PI: J. Lumeng) supported the primary author.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Megan M. Julian
    • 1
    Email author
  • Maria Muzik
    • 1
    • 2
  • Katherine Lisa Rosenblum
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Center for Human Growth & DevelopmentUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA

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