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Maternal mental health and child problem behaviours: disentangling the role of depression and borderline personality dysfunction

  • Fay Huntley (a1), Nicola Wright (a1), Andrew Pickles (a2), Helen Sharp (a3) and Jonathan Hill (a4)...
Abstract
Background

It is not known whether associations between child problem behaviours and maternal depression can be accounted for by comorbid borderline personality disorder (BPD) dysfunction.

Aim

To examine the contributions of maternal depression and BPD symptoms to child problem behaviours.

Method

Depression trajectories over the fist-year postpartum were generated using repeated measurement from a general population sample of 997 mothers recruited in pregnancy. In a stratified subsample of 251, maternal depression and BPD symptoms were examined as predictors of child problem behaviours at 2.5 years.

Results

Child problem behaviours were predicted by a high maternal depression trajectory prior to the inclusion of BPD symptoms. This association was no longer significant after the introduction of BPD symptoms.

Conclusions

Risks for child problem behaviours currently attributed to maternal depression may arise from more persistent and pervasive difficulties found in borderline personality dysfunction.

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Copyright
This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Corresponding author
Nicola Wright, School of Psychology, University of Liverpool, Eleanor Rathbone Building, Bedford Street South, Liverpool L69 7ZA, UK. Email: n.j.wright@liverpool.ac.uk
Footnotes
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Declaration of interest

None.

Footnotes
References
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Maternal mental health and child problem behaviours: disentangling the role of depression and borderline personality dysfunction

  • Fay Huntley (a1), Nicola Wright (a1), Andrew Pickles (a2), Helen Sharp (a3) and Jonathan Hill (a4)...
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