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Becoming Occluded: The Transition to Motherhood of Women with Postnatal Depression

Homewood, E and TWEED, Alison and Cree, M and Crossley, J (2009) Becoming Occluded: The Transition to Motherhood of Women with Postnatal Depression. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 6. pp. 313-329. ISSN 1478-0887

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Abstract or description

A grounded theory methodology was used to develop a psychological account of the transition to motherhood of nine women who had received diagnoses of postnatal
depression (PND). A core construct, termed “Becoming Occluded,” was identified in the analysis. This captured a five-phase psychological process model. The process began with participants’ anticipation of motherhood. In the second phase, participants were overwhelmed by responsibility for their infants’ dependency. In the third phase, they became emotionally fragmented by attempting to meet their infants’ needs. Difficult interactive experiences, such as those around feeding, exacerbated mothers’ sense of inadequacy, leading them into a fourth phase of negative self-evaluation. The final phase represented re-emergence from distress, in which participants distanced themselves from their infants’ dependency. Clinical implications of the study included the
identification of early signs of PND and potential utility of psychological therapies for mothers considered vulnerable to depression.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: C800 Psychology
Faculty: Faculty of Health Sciences > Psychology, Sport and Exercise
Depositing User: Alison TWEED
Date Deposited: 26 Nov 2012 16:05
Last Modified: 26 Nov 2012 16:05
URI: http://eprints.staffs.ac.uk/id/eprint/154

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