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An investigation into the influence of various sources of social support for Irish mothers, on their subjective feelings of loneliness and stress

Byrne, Aisling (2018) An investigation into the influence of various sources of social support for Irish mothers, on their subjective feelings of loneliness and stress. Undergraduate thesis, Dublin, National College of Ireland.

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Abstract

Objective: There is a scarcity of research surrounding the unique psychosocial and psychological issues faced during motherhood, which include: changes to a woman’s social circle, and the potential onset of loneliness or increased stress. Existing literature indicates that perceived social support can buffer feelings of stress, and can be related to decreased loneliness; however, there are but a few studies showing this among mothers. The current study was designed to investigate how employment and partners as sources of support can moderate mothers’ perceived stress and loneliness.

Methods: 193 Irish mothers aged 19-49 took part in the current study. Participants’ subjective feelings of loneliness, perceived stress and perceived social support were measured.

Results: Women with part-time employment showed the lowest levels of both loneliness and stress. Also, those with partners/spouses displayed significantly lower levels of loneliness and stress. The combination of staying at home and being a single mother was indicative of much higher loneliness and stress. Notably, partnered/married, full-time working mothers experienced higher stress, despite having partners/spouses as support.

Conclusions: Results show that mothers benefit greatly from having moderate hours of employment outside the home as a source of social support, as well as having a close source of emotional support. However, where work is full-time, parental stress can increase. Further research is needed to confirm the effects of these sources of support on mothers.

Item Type: Thesis (Undergraduate)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > Psychology
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > Psychology > Stress (Psychology)
Divisions: School of Business > BA (Honours) in Psychology
Depositing User: CAOIMHE NI MHAICIN
Date Deposited: 23 Oct 2018 14:20
Last Modified: 23 Oct 2018 14:20
URI: http://trap.ncirl.ie/id/eprint/3294

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