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Communication, Postpartum depression, Social support



  1. Logsdon, M. Cynthia DNS, ARNP
  2. Birkimer, John C. PhD
  3. Usui, Wayne M. PhD


Purpose: To describe the relationship between postpartum support and depressive symptoms in a sample of African-American women of low socioecenomic status.


Design: Depscriptive correlational design using a convenience sample.


Method: Fifty-seven African-American women at 4 to 6 weeks' postpartum were interviewed as they waited for their infant to receive a well-baby exam. Identification of amount and type of postpartum support received, as well as the importance of each type of support was measured using the Postpartum Support Questionnaire. Depressive symptoms were measured using the CES-D depression instrument.


Results: There was a high incidence of symptoms of depression, and depressive symptoms were associated with support being very important to the woman.


Clinical Implications: Importance of support is a better predictor of outcomes than how much support a woman receives. Communication of need for support and establishing boundaries with family members are recommended.