"Depressed" mothers' perceptions of their preschool children's vulnerability

Debra Bendell, Tiffany Field, Regina Yando, Claudia Lang, Alex Martinez, Jeff Pickens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


"Depressed" mothers who scored in the depression range on the Beck Depression Inventory when their infants were 3-months-old were asked to complete the Vulnerable Child Scale when their children were preschool age. Depressed versus non-depressed mothers rated their preschool children as being more vulnerable (as did an independent observer) as well as having more behavior problems. The vulnerability ratings were significantly related to infancy stage measures including the POMS (mothers' depressed mood), the infants' behavior ratings and heart rate range during interactions with a nondepressed stranger. These measures of the mothers' and infants' behavior tapped during early infancy may have contributed to the mothers having perceived their children as "vulnerable" during the preschool stage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)183-190
Number of pages8
JournalChild Psychiatry & Human Development
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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