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Predictors of Early Parenting Self-efficacy: Results of a Prospective Cohort Study

Bryanton, Janet; Gagnon, Anita J.; Hatem, Marie; Johnston, Celeste

doi: 10.1097/01.NNR.0000313490.56788.cd
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Background: Parenting self-efficacy has been identified as one determinant of positive parenting. The literature is inconsistent regarding the predictors of parenting self-efficacy, and there is limited evidence regarding these predictors in the early postpartum period.

Objectives: To determine the factors predictive of parenting self-efficacy at 12 to 48 hr after childbirth and at 1 month postpartum.

Method: Six-hundred fifty-two women were recruited consecutively from the postpartum units of two general hospitals on Prince Edward Island, Canada. Data were collected at 12 to 48 hr postpartum using self-report and chart review. On the basis of scoring positive or negative on their childbirth perceptions, 175 of these mothers were assigned to two cohorts. They were visited at home at 1 month postpartum, where data were collected using self-report.

Results: Using multiple logistic regression, greater parenting self-efficacy at 12 to 48 hr after childbirth was predicted by multiparity and single marital status and correlated with positive perception of the birth experience, higher general self-efficacy, and excellent partner relationship. Greater parenting self-efficacy at 1 month was predicted by age ≤30 years and multiparity and correlated with excellent partner relationship and maternal perception of infant contentment.

Discussion: Birth perception is a correlate of parenting self-efficacy that is modifiable; therefore, nurses have an opportunity to strive to create a positive birth experience for all women to enhance their early parenting self-efficacy. Nurses can also consider assessing women at risk for suboptimal parenting self-efficacy and intervene through teaching, support, and parenting self-efficacy boosting interventions.

Janet Bryanton, PhD, MN, RN, is Associate Professor, School of Nursing, University of Prince Edward Island, Charlottetown, Canada.

Anita J. Gagnon, PhD, MPH, RN, is Associate Professor, School of Nursing, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Marie Hatem, PhD, MHSA, RN, is Assistant Professor, Faculty of Medicine, University of Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Celeste Johnston, DEd, MS, RN, is Professor, School of Nursing, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Accepted for publication February 2, 2008.

Thank you for the funding received for this study to the Canadian Nurses Foundation Nursing Care Partnership Program, Groupe de recherche interuniversitaire en soins infirmiers de Montréal (GRISIM), Isaac Walton Killam Health Centre, University of Prince Edward Island, Children's Health & Applied Research Team, and University of Prince Edward Island School of Nursing. Le Fonds de la recherche en santé du Québec (FRSQ) provided career support to Anita J. Gagnon during the time of this study.

Corresponding author: Janet Bryanton, PhD, MN, RN, School of Nursing, University of Prince Edward Island, 550 University Ave., Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada C1A 4P3 (e-mail: jbryanton@upei.ca).

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.