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Beginnings Guides Blog

Seeking Home Visitors’ Views from the Field - Maternal Depression

In analyzing LSP data from our 2006-08 study Does Home Visitation Promote Maternal Health Literacy?
for a follow up study on health literacy and depression, we found that social support is an important
predictor of depression. This is already well documented in the literature.  

Here is what surprised and puzzled me: Support from a male partner (father of the baby, spouse,
or boyfriend) lost significance after 6 months in a home visiting program. Friends were important
initially, too. But after a year, their support also became insignificant. Only support from family
(positive or negative) was consistently and powerfully predictive of maternal depression throughout
12 to 18 months of home visiting.

Home Visitors, in your experience, what might explain these findings? Please comment below,
or email me sandras@beginningsguides.com. I will summarize your responses next week.
Thanks ahead. ss
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