Parentified child in family systems

Kristy Soloski, Brie Turns, Porter Macey, Cydney Schleiden

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Parentification* in the family system is defined as a functional and/or emotional role reversal wherein the child sacrifices his or her own needs in order to accommodate and care for emotional or logistical needs of a parent (Chase, 1999). An inevitable piece of the parent-child relationship is how both parties learn to respond to one another’s needs. On one side of the spectrum, responding to a parent’s needs can help a child develop compassion and reciprocity with others (Chase, 1999); on the opposite end, if a parent depends too much on the child, forcing the child to assume many of the parent’s responsibilities, the parentified child* may learn that his or her needs are less important than others (Chase, 1999). When children take over parental responsibilities, they will often leave the childhood status functioning more as an adult.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationParentified child in family systems
PublisherSpringer Publishing
StatePublished - Jan 5 2017


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