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Mental Health Predicted by Coping, Social Support, and Resilience among Young Unwed Pregnant Malaysian Women and Mothers Living in Shelter Homes
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work. School of Psychology and Human Development, Univ ersiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Kebangsaan, Malaysia .ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6596-3604
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
University Of Rostock, Faculty of Philosophy.
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This exploratory study examines the prediction of mental health by social support, resilience and coping among Malaysian unwed young pregnant women and unwed young mothers during their stay in shelter homes in Malaysia. Methods: 79 unwed young pregnant women and unwed young mothers in nine shelter homes in Malaysian provinces were investigated in a follow-up by the Interview Schedule for Social Interaction, the Ways of Coping questionnaire, the Child and Youth Resilience Measure, the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ28), and the Beck Depression Inventory in Malay language. Results: Cognitive and behavioural depressive symptoms as well as the total GHQ and depression severity were slightly, but significantly higher at the first assessment. The unwed young mothers reported that they applied confrontive coping more often at the 1st assessment than at the 2nd assessment; but, that more attachment being available at the 1st assessment. Between 14 % for depressive-behavioural symptoms and 36 % for general health at the 2nd assessment could be explained by the variance in social support, coping, and resilience at the 1st assessment. Conclusions: The level of resilience, coping or social support among unwed young pregnant women and unwed young mothers did not substantially change after they had been spent a certain period of time in a shelter home. The unmarried young mothers reported a serious level of psychological symptoms supporting the assumption that many of them suffered from a moderate to severe depression that was untreated. These institutions do not provide effective services for the vulnerable unmarried young mothers that meet their psychological and social needs or improve their coping or resilience.

Keyword [en]
unwed pregnant women, shelter home, Malaysia, coping, resilience, social support, mental health
National Category
Social Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-82714OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-82714DiVA: diva2:662377
Available from: 2013-11-06 Created: 2013-11-06 Last updated: 2015-10-23Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Social support, coping, resilience and mental health in Malaysian unwed young pregnant women and young mothers: Their experiences while living in a shelter home
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Social support, coping, resilience and mental health in Malaysian unwed young pregnant women and young mothers: Their experiences while living in a shelter home
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis is based on four articles. In the first article, questionnaire data from a follow-upstudy (Article I) that aimed to explore social support, coping and resilience as predictors ofmental health in unwed young pregnant women and young mothers during placement in ashelter home were analysed. Nine shelter homes were invited to participate in the study (n ofpre-assessment = 250; n of post-assessment = 79). Percentages, paired sample t-tests, multipleanalyses of variance (MANOVA), and multiple regression analysis were used to analyse thedata. There were no significant changes in social support, coping or resilience between thepre- and post-assessment. The variability in the mental health scores from the follow-upassessment could be explained by the variability in coping, social support and resilience forbetween 14% of the variance in the BDI score and 36% in the GHQ sum-score. However,about 32% of the unwed young pregnant women and young mothers had a BDI score above26 suggesting the occurrence of a depressive disorder at the second assessment. Thequalitative part of the study (Articles II and III) attempted to investigate the reactions receivedfrom their significant others, and how these reactions influenced their pregnancy experience.Furthermore, their daily life experience during their placement in a shelter home is described.Seventeen unwed young pregnant women and young mothers aged from 12 to 18 wereinterviewed. Qualitative content analysis and thematic analysis were used to analyse thetranscriptions of the interviews. Significant others were often perceived as reacting to theunwed young pregnant women and young mothers with secrecy, repression and rejection. Theresponse of the unwed young pregnant women and young mothers to the significant others inrespect of their pregnancy was to feel detached, trapped, unworthy and ambiguous. Theresults of the thematic analysis (Article III) led to three themes: rules and regulations, therelationship with the staff, and the relationship with the other girls in the shelter home. Theresults indicated that the participating shelter homes were often not fulfilling the standards ofshelter homes according to the Malaysian national laws and the United Nations Conventionon the Rights of the Child. In addition, a mixed methods approach (Article IV) was applied toinvestigate the associations between the experiences of the unwed young pregnant women andyoung mothers in the shelter home and their social support, coping, resilience, and mentalhealth. Because of the nominal data, the findings from the qualitative analyses were quantifiedand jointly analysed with the questionnaire data using Spearman Rank coefficient. The analyses were done based on the interviews and survey with 17 unwed young pregnantwomen and young mothers aged 12 to 18 years. The mixed methods study emphasized thatthe unwed young pregnant women and young mothers have poor availability and adequacy ofsocial support and were at risk of developing mental health problems if untreated.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå Universitet, 2013. 75 p.
Series
Studier i socialt arbete vid Umeå universitet : avhandlings- och skriftserie, ISSN 0283-300X ; 79
Keyword
pregnancy out of wedlock, teenage pregnancy, shelter home, residential care, unwed teenage mothers, unwed young mothers, social work practice, Malaysia
National Category
Social Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-82716 (URN)978-91-7459-756-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2013-11-29, Samhällsvetarhuset, Samvetet, Umeå Universitet, Umeå, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2013-11-08 Created: 2013-11-07 Last updated: 2015-10-23Bibliographically approved

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