Attachment insecurity, depression, and the transition to parenthood

Feeney, Judith, Alexander, Richard, Noller, Patricia and Hohaus, Lydia (2003) Attachment insecurity, depression, and the transition to parenthood. Personal Relationships, 10 4: 475-493. doi:10.1046/j.1475-6811.2003.00061.x

Author Feeney, Judith
Alexander, Richard
Noller, Patricia
Hohaus, Lydia
Title Attachment insecurity, depression, and the transition to parenthood
Journal name Personal Relationships   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1350-4126
Publication date 2003-12
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1046/j.1475-6811.2003.00061.x
Volume 10
Issue 4
Start page 475
End page 493
Total pages 20
Place of publication U.K.
Publisher Blackwell
Collection year 2003
Language eng
Subject C1
780108 Behavioural and cognitive sciences
170113 Social and Community Psychology
1701 Psychology
Abstract In a longitudinal study of adult attachment and depression during the transition to parenthood, 76 couples completed questionnaires on three occasions: during the second trimester of pregnancy, and six weeks and six months postbirth. On the first and second occasions, the couples were also interviewed about their experiences of pregnancy and parenthood, respectively. Measures were also completed at similar time intervals by a comparison group of 74 childless couples. Attachment security was assessed in terms of the dimensions of discomfort with closeness and relationship anxiety. Relationship anxiety was less stable for transition wives than for other participants. Relationship anxiety also predicted increases in new mothers' depressive symptoms, after controlling for a broad range of other risk factors. However, the association between relationship anxiety and maternal depression was moderated by husbands' caregiving style. Maternal depression was linked to increases in husbands' and wives' attachment insecurity and marital dissatisfaction. Results are discussed in terms of the impact of depression and negative working models of attachment on couple interaction.
Keyword Adult Attachment
Close Relationships
Coping Strategies
Marital Change
Postpartum Depression
Psychology, Social
Romantic Love
Q-Index Code C1

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Created: Wed, 15 Aug 2007, 02:15:22 EST