Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

SLU research on teen moms refutes conventional wisdom: Early motherhood may not ruin their lives

23.11.2005


Nurses can play pivotal role in helping young families succeed



A new Saint Louis University study rebuts the assumption that all teenagers who have babies face a future of dismal failure.

"Earlier studies exaggerated the long-term negative consequences associated with teenage mothering," says Lee SmithBattle, R.N., DNSc, professor of nursing at Saint Louis University Doisy College of Health Sciences and principal investigator of a qualitative study that analyzed the experiences of teen mothers a dozen years after they had given birth to their first child.


"This study and several others show that teen mothers fare better over time than our assumptions suggest," she says.

SmithBattle, who has been researching teen mothers for 17 years, found that early motherhood has not ruined their lives.

She has followed the lives of mothers and their families every four years, starting when their babies were less than a year old. For this article, SmithBattle analyzed interviews conducted when 11 moms were in their 30s to show how becoming a mom as a teen affected their lives. Her article appears in this month’s issue of Western Journal of Nursing Research.

Some women in their early 30s found great meaning in parenting, marriage and their work. Others were also devoted parents but they lacked fulfillment in marriage or a career. A third group of mothers found much less meaning in parenting and felt powerless to cope with the responsibilities of motherhood.

"In spite of adverse childhood experiences, mothering for some teens provides a corrective or turning-point experience," SmithBattle says.

Some women "first find their voices in loving and caring for a child," she says. "Mothering placed them on a new path and gave new meaning and depth to their lives.

Mothering transformed their worlds and created a new moral horizon for how they should live.

"Some mothers face many challenges but it’s not strictly because they had a baby when they were teenagers."

She says many teen mothers have difficult childhoods and come from disadvantaged communities with poor schools so they start out with many strikes against them. There’s little hope or support to finish high school or go to college. Becoming a mother is almost seen as inevitable.

And once they become mothers, the lack of support for education and job training for anything other than low-skilled positions without health benefits reinforces the disadvantage that often led them to become teen parents in the first place.

"We stop them dead in their tracks," SmithBattle says. "Those strikes are not just from their family situation, but from our shortsighted social policies."

Nurses who visit teen mothers in their homes can be critical in helping a teen mother grow into the responsibilities of parenthood.

"The responsive presence of a nurse can help a teen to imagine and carve out a meaningful future," she says.

Nurses also must intervene when educational, health or social policies make it even tougher for teens to succeed as mothers, SmithBatte says.

"Clinicians can play a key role in mentoring and nurturing young mothers when their sense of self, agency and future are nascent and fragile. Nurses also play a pivotal role in linking teens to resources to complete school, obtain day care, access health care and mental health services and gain life skills."

Nancy Solomon | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.slu.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Smart Data Transformation – Surfing the Big Wave
02.12.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Angewandte Informationstechnik FIT

nachricht Climate change could outpace EPA Lake Champlain protections
18.11.2016 | University of Vermont

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>