Does Putting Your Baby First Cause Stress and Unhappiness?

New study shows moms whose lives revolve around their kids are more likely to be depressed and unsatisfied

Posted by The Baby News

Moms and dads who subscribe to "intensive" child-centered parenting are more likely to be stressed and unhappy than laid-back parents, a new study from the University of Washington Mary in Virginia suggests.

More than 180 moms with children under the age of 5 were recruited to complete online questionnaires about their parenting philosophies, mental health, family support and life satisfaction. In order to identify the parenting styles of the participants, researchers asked them to say how strongly they agreed with 5 principles of intensive parenting:

  1. that moms are primary
  2. that children are entirely fulfilling
  3. that children need a lot of stimulation
  4. that parenting is very challenging
  5. and that parents' lives should revolve around their children.

The researchers found that moms who agreed with 3 of these 5 principles were far more likely to suffer from mental health issues, especially depression and stress. The study also found that parents who described parenting as challenging reported less life satisfaction, more depression and greater stress than their peers.

Like all reserach studies, these findings are statistical - in other words, they apply to some child-centered moms but not to all child-centered moms.

Although no research has been done on how longterm  intensive parenting affects children, psychologist and study researcher Miriam Liss says there's plenty of evidence to show that having a depressed or stressed mother is hard on a child.

What's your position on this reserach?

Is this you?  Or is this you?

Or are you a laid-back, non-child-centered mom?



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