This project investigates how mental health is impacted across the transition to parenthood. The project uses large, longitudinal, community-based datasets (such as the HILDA study and the PATH project) to track individuals (both men and women) over time as they become parents. Sub-projects within this theme are also investigating the use of social media to recruit perinatal populations for health research, and the role of job conditions 'caring for an infant at home' in postpartum mental health.
In 2018, we conducted the Caring for a Young Baby Survey (CYBS) to find out more about Australian mothers’ experiences caring for an infant. In particular, we were interested in how mothers’ with an infant balance work and family responsibilities, the division of caregiving with their partner, and their postnatal mental health. Initially, we surveyed 1050 mothers with a baby aged between 0-6 months old. We then followed-up with 820 mothers 2 months later to see how their circumstances had changed (78% follow-up rate). To thank mothers for participating in the follow-up survey, $5 was donated to Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Australia (PANDA) – a total of $4100. For a quick snapshot of the findings, take a look here.