ERIC Number: ED187432
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Apr
Support Systems Used by Adolescent Mothers: Who Helps and What Difference It Makes.
Colletta, Nancy Donohue; And Others
This study investigates variations in the amount, source, and kind of support available to adolescent mothers with differing needs (those in both a comprehensive program for teenage mothers and in high school, those in high school only, and high school dropouts), and the effectiveness of this support. The total sample was composed of 64 black adolescent mothers who averaged 16.27 years of age when their children were born. Tape recorded interviews consisted of open-ended questions and structured probes concerning: (1) mothers' perceptions of social and institutional factors in the context of their lives that made it easier or more difficult for them to function as parents; (2) mothers' approach to dealing with problem situations (coping style); and (3) mothers' emotional reaction to each category of strain in their lives. Following the interviews, Rosenberg's (1965) self-esteem questionnaire and Strickland's (1973) locus of control questionnaires were administered. Overall, the findings indicated that a decrease in stress, an increase in self-esteem, and a more active coping style occurred when support was received from individuals, but not when the support was received from community services that were not specifically designed to meet the needs of adolescent mothers. Mothers who received the most community services support were more likely to believe that they had little control over their lives. (Author/SS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Southeastern Conference on Human Development (6th, Alexandria, VA, April 17-19, 1980).