Parental bonding style and illness severity in a longitudinal study of individuals with first episode psychosis

Becky Pollard, Helen Fisher, Paul Fearon, Kevin Morgan, Julia Lappin, Gerard Hutchinson, Gillian A. Doody, Peter Jones, Robin Murray, Craig Morgan, Paola Dazzan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A parenting style with high amounts of control combined with low caring or nurturing behaviour has been reported in association with mental disorders including schizophrenia. However, the association of parenting style with illness severity in individuals with schizophrenia has never been evaluated retrospectively or over a longitudinal time course. In a subset (n = 84) of the participants included in the AESOP (Aetiology and Ethnicity in Schizophrenia and Other Psychoses)-10 study, we evaluated participants’ perceptions of their own parents’ bonding style at the time of their first episode of psychosis using the parental bonding instrument (PBI). We then examined the association between different bonding styles, illness course and severity, and global functioning over a 10-year follow-up. Participants who perceived that their fathers had a more caring and less controlling parenting style showed better functioning at follow-up. However, in contrast to previous research, participants who reported having been subject to uncaring and controlling parenting styles were not found to have a notably worse course of illness or symptom severity over the follow-up period. These results indicate that more optimal parental bonding styles may be associated with better overall functioning in individuals with psychosis but not with other measures of illness outcome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)707-711
Number of pages5
JournalArchives of Women's Mental Health
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 28 Jul 2023


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