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Table 1 Project Air Strategy Key Principles for Clinicians Working with Parents with Personality Disorders

From: A new intervention for people with borderline personality disorder who are also parents: a pilot study of clinician acceptability

Prioritise child safety and encourage parents to do the same
Listen to parenting struggles in a non-judgemental and accepting manner
Focus on building trust and rapport, as parents with mental illness can feel vulnerable
Recognise and value parents’ strengths and positive attributes
Re-affirm that the goal is to be a ‘good enough’ parent, not perfect
Help the parent to keep their child’s needs and feelings in mind despite mental illnesssometimes getting in the way
Help parents to facilitate open discussion with their child about what is happening in the home, including discussing the parent’s mental health issues and their diagnosis
Ensure a family crisis plan is in place for when the parent is very unwell
Help parents with parenting skills, including age-appropriate ways of relating to their child and setting firm and kind limits to protect everyone
Where possible seek opportunities to protect children from being distressed by mental illness
Ensure children have the best possible chance to grow up normally, and prioritise ensuring they attend school and have time to join in with their peers