Changes in the Parenting Perceptions of Incarcerated Mothers who Participate in a Parenting Class
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Having the ability to procreate does not ensure the ability to parent. Many offender mothers come to prison only to realize they are ill equipped to raise their children. After generations, devastated by abuse, single parenthood, neglect and poverty the offender mothers’ worry their children will follow in their footsteps and eventually serve time in prison. Parenting skills tend be learned behaviors that are part of the historical, social, cultural and environmental factors that form interactions and expectations. Offender mothers who participated in the parenting project used a parenting curriculum that offered them the skills to teach their children: autonomy, social competence, interdependence, problem solving and resiliency. The Adult, Adolescent, Parenting Inventory (AAPI-2) was used to study the impact of the parenting curriculum on the offender mothers who took the class. A control group and offenders in the Life Skills program also participated in the AAPI-2 and their scores were compared to those of the offenders who participated in the parenting project. Rehabilitative projects such as the parenting project are designed to offer the offender mothers an alternative to doing the same thing the same way and expecting different results.