• The relationship between mother's alcohol use and child's well-being

      Yin, Tao; Soeken, Karen (2000)
      The study is aimed at: (a) testing a structural model on the relations among maternal alcohol use, family cohesion, quality of parenting, and children's well-being, and (b) examining the mediational effects of family cohesion and quality of parenting on children's well-being. The data from both the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 (NLSY79) and the Children of NLSY79 datasets in 1994 were used to obtain a study sample of 1381 mother-child dyads. All the children in this study were between 10 and 14 years old in 1994. The mothers answered questions related to their alcohol use, such as the duration, frequency, quantity of drinking, and the impact of drinking. Information regarding family cohesion, quality of parenting, and child's well-being including psychological well-being, school performance, and child's own substance use/abuse were obtained from both the mothers and the children. A tentative model that highlights the relationships among these four constructs was developed based on literature review. Structural equation modeling was used to test the model in a random-split sample, which contained 691 of the subjects. The final revised theoretical model was cross-validated using the rest of the total sample. Although the chi-square test value for the overall model fit of the final revised theoretical model is 882.7, with df = 454, p < 0.01, the ratio of the chi2/df is less than 2, indicating an acceptable fit. The fitness of the model to the sample is also supported by other fit indices, such as the GFI, CFI, and the NNFI. In this model, mother's alcohol use is associated with decreased family cohesion, and decreased family cohesion contributes to child's increased level of substance use/abuse. In addition, higher level of parental control/discipline is also associated with lower level of child's substance use/abuse, higher level of psychological well-being, and better school performance. The cross-validation also partially supports the external validity of the model. Early intervention aimed at promoting children's development may need to focus on how to promote closeness within the family and the quality of parenting rather than mother's own alcohol use behaviors.
    • A study of maternal employment and family contexts: Influences on maternal health and mother-infant interaction

      Wendt, Linda Elaine; Parks, Peggy L. (1991)
      The purpose of this study was to examine relationships between selected employment, family, mother and infant characteristics, and mother-infant interaction in a sample of 81 mothers who were employed by three-months postpartum. The goal of the study was to identify family and employment variables that indirectly predicted mother- infant interaction through maternal health. A longitudinal design was used to test the Lerner-Galambos model of maternal employment. Family context variables included family social support, spousal support, and child care arrangements. Employment context variables included reasons for working, employment incongruence, hours worked and employment changes. Maternal health variables included depressive symptomatology, general health status, and number of health conditions. Mother-Infant interaction was measured by the Clark ERA dyad subscales. Variables were measured at three times: in the hospital following birth, at three-months postpartum, and at six-months postpartum. Employment context, family context, and mother and infant health variables were factor analyzed for purposes of data reduction. The factor scores were entered into hierarchical regressions. Neither employment context, nor family context, nor a combination of employment context and family context variables predicted mother-infant interaction through maternal health at six months. Maternal and infant health did not predict mother-infant interaction at six months. Family context at three months and at six months predicted maternal employment at three and six months. Exploratory analyses indicated that family context factors at three months predicted maternal health at six months. Employment context at three months predicted maternal health at six months. These findings are important for nurses who work with employed mothers during the perinatal period.
    • A study of the association between social functioning and manic-depressive illness in family constellations with presumed genetic vulnerability for affective illness

      Scott, Alice Malone; Ephross, Paul H. (1991)
      This exploratory-descriptive study examines the association between social functioning and subclassifications of manic-depressive illness in family constellations with presumed genetic vulnerability for affective illness. The research question is: Are there differences in the social functioning of family members with bipolar I disorder, bipolar II disorder, and their biological relatives who are not affectively ill? A study sample of convenience was drawn from the Genetic Linkage Study of Affective illness conducted at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Twenty-one bipolar I's, 22 bipolar II's, and 20 unaffected participants were included. Instruments included interviewer administered scales (Hamilton Depression Rating Scale, Young Mania Rating Scale, and Health and Daily Living Assessment) and self administered scales (Social Adjustment Scale SR and Eysenck Personality Questionnaire). As hypothesized, findings reveal a statistically significant relationship between the diagnosis of bipolar illness and inadequate social functioning in the areas of close social relationships and overall social role adjustment. Both the bipolar I's and the bipolar II's had significantly fewer close relationships than their biological unaffected relatives. The two bipolar groups did not differ significantly from each other. When analyzed by Multiple Regression, personality as measured by the Eysenck Neuroticism Scale was found to be more highly predictive of overall social role adjustment than was the diagnosis of bipolar illness. Implications for social work and related practice in mental health settings and further research were drawn. Conceptual refinement of the global concepts social functioning within the interpersonal field and normality is greatly needed. Knowledge is lacking in the areas of nosology and the psychological and social environments which characterize individuals with subclassifications of bipolar illness. The impact of both ill and well intervals upon the family system needs to be explored.