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J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 1997 Oct;36(10):1416-25.

Religiosity and depression: ten-year follow-up of depressed mothers and offspring.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University, New York, NY 10032, USA.



This study examines maternal religiosity as a protective factor against depression in offspring.


Sixty mothers and 151 offspring were independently assessed over the course of a 10-year follow-up. Maternal and offspring religiosity were assessed on the basis of self-report of the importance of religion, the frequency of attendance of religious services, and religious denomination. Depression was assessed using the Schedule for Affective Disorders-Lifetime version. Maternal bonding style was assessed through offspring report on the Parental Bonding Instrument. A series of logistic regressions were run to predict offspring depression status, taking into account maternal religiosity, offspring religiosity, and mother-offspring concordance of religiosity.


Maternal religiosity and mother-offspring concordance of religiosity were shown to be protective against offspring depression, independent of maternal parental bonding, maternal social functioning, and maternal demographics.


Maternal religiosity and offspring concordance with it may protect against depression in offspring.

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