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J Nerv Ment Dis. 2008 Jul;196(7):522-30. doi: 10.1097/NMD.0b013e31817cf721.

Narratives by Japanese mothers with chronic mental illness in the Tokyo metropolitan area: their feelings toward their children and perceptions of their children's feelings.

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  • 1Department of Family Nursing, Graduate School of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, Bunkyo, Tokyo, Japan.


Women with mental illness generally have normal fertility rates. Mothers with mental illness think that their children are important for their lives but also experience difficulties in relating to their children. Therefore, it is important to understand the mothers' perception of what experiences influence them or their parenting practices in relationships with their children. We conducted narrative interviews with 20 Japanese mothers who were being treated for either schizophrenia or mood disorders. The data were analyzed using the Modified Grounded Theory Approach. For the mothers, their feelings toward their children and their perception of their children's feelings toward them or their illness influenced the mothers and their parenting practices. Implications for support are discussed and directions for future research are presented.

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