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J Abnorm Psychol. 1996 May;105(2):220-31.

Depressive symptomatology in new mothers: a stress and coping perspective.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia.


The aim of the present research was to test the utility of a stress-coping model of postpartum depression. Data were collected during the last trimester of pregnancy (n = 197) and twice after the birth (4 weeks, n = 180, and approximately 5 months, n = 163). Coping resources and depressive symptomatology were assessed at Time 1, stress and coping were assessed at Time 2, and depressive symptomatology and partner ratings of coping effectiveness were assessed at Times 2 and 3. After control of the effects of initial depression, there was evidence of significant effects of levels of stress and coping responses on the Time 2 and Time 3 outcome measures. There were also some evidence linking coping resources (particularly self-esteem and family support) to postpartum depressive symptomatology.

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