Predictors of Parent-Infant Bonding Among Postpartum Chinese Mothers and Fathers

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2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Introduction: The emotional bond that parents feel with their child is a crucial determinant of the child's psychosocial well-being and future development. Few studies have evaluated the predictive roles of depressive symptoms, relationship satisfaction, and family sense of coherence in the quality of parent-infant bonding for both parents during the perinatal period. The aim of this study was to determine the predictive effects of depressive symptoms, relationship satisfaction, and family sense of coherence during pregnancy; changes thereof from pregnancy to 6 weeks postpartum; and the partner's bond with the infant on the quality of parent-infant bonding at 6 weeks postpartum in Chinese mothers and fathers. Methods: This was a secondary analysis of data from an intervention study. A convenience sample of 231 Chinese childbearing couples was recruited from the antenatal clinics of public hospitals in Hong Kong. Parent-infant bonding, depressive symptoms, relationship satisfaction, and family sense of coherence were measured using the Postpartum Bonding Questionnaire, Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale, Dyadic Adjustment Scale, and Family Sense of Coherence Scale during pregnancy and at 6 weeks postpartum. Results: The findings indicated that higher depressive symptoms during pregnancy and poor partner bonding with the infant were the major predictors of impaired parent-infant bonding at 6 weeks postpartum for both parents. Prenatal relationship satisfaction was not a significant predictor of parent-infant bonding at 6 weeks postpartum for either parent. Prenatal family sense of coherence was a strong predictor of parent-infant bonding for mothers but not for fathers. Discussion: The findings highlight the significant effects of depressive symptoms, family sense of coherence, and the partner's bond with the infant on parent-infant bonding during the perinatal period. Comprehensive early prenatal programs that promote parental well-being and strengthen family sense of coherence should be integrated into existing perinatal services to promote the quality of parent-infant bonding for both parents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)117-124
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Midwifery and Women's Health
Volume68
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2023

Keywords

  • family sense of coherence
  • parent-infant bonding
  • perinatal depression
  • relationship satisfaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Maternity and Midwifery

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