ERIC Number: ED223339
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Oct
Reference Count: 0
Depression and the Maternal Behavior of Adolescent Mothers.
Colletta, Nancy Donohue
The rates of depression among a sample of 75 adolescent mothers were studied in order to investigate the relationship of environmental stress and support to depressive symptomatology and to investigate the relationship between depression and adolescents' interactions with their children. The Stress, Support, and Family Functioning Interview, developed specifically for this study, was used to measure subjects' amounts and sources of support in the categories of task performance, material aid, emotional support, information/guidance, and community services. Sources and levels of stress were also assessed in the areas of education, employment, relatives, friends, partner/spouse, children, health, housing, and finances. In addition, data were obtained on subjects' maternal behavior, maternal role satisfaction, and understanding of developmental needs through the Parental Acceptance-Rejection Questionnaire, the Maternal Role Satisfaction Questionnaire, and the Attitude Toward Child Development Questionnaire, respectively. Subjects' symptom characteristics of depression (sleep and eating disorders, feelings of powerlessness and sadness) were measured by the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale. Taking the sample as a whole, it was found that mothers were susceptible to depression when faced with high levels of stress, particularly stress originating from partner or spouse, education, finances, illnesses, or relatives. Levels of depression tended to be low when mothers received emotional help, material support, or high levels of overall assistance. There was a strong relationship between rates of depression and maternal behaviors in young mothers aged 14 to 17. When depressed they tended to be hostile, indifferent, and rejecting of their children, more often exhibiting dissatisfaction with their maternal role and showing little understanding of the children's developmental needs. (MP)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council on Family Relations (Washington, DC, October 12-16, 1982).