Previously infertile mothers, transition to motherhood, postpartum depression, infertility, meta ethnography, phenomenology, lived experience, meaning of breastfeeding
The lived experiences of previously infertile mothers in the early postpartum period have not been previously studied. The purpose of the research was to explore the experiences of previously infertile mothers during their early postpartum period. Colaizzi’s (1978) approach to descriptive phenomenological inquiry was used to analyze the interview data obtained from twelve first-time, previously infertile mothers. These new mothers, aged 27 to 43 years, were interviewed twice. The first interview focused on eliciting descriptions of new motherhood in the early postpartum period after overcoming infertility. The second interview validated the interpretations from the first interview and provided additional information and reflection. Two main themes emerged that described the early postpartum experience of first-time, previously infertile mothers: 1) Lingering Identity as Infertile; and 2) Gratitude for the Gift of Motherhood. Participants reported that their lingering identity as infertile and immense gratitude for the gift of motherhood propelled them to establish unrealistic expectations to be the perfect mother. When they were unable to live up to being the perfect mother, they censored their feelings of inadequacy, guilt, and shame. Findings from this study sensitize healthcare providers to the difficulties faced by previously infertile women during their transition to motherhood.
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Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
College of Nursing
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)
Dissertations, Academic -- Nursing, Nursing -- Dissertations, Academic
Ladores, Sigrid, "The Early Postpartum Experience Of Previously Infertile Mothers" (2013). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2004-2019. 3010.