I was motivated by a combination of nursing practice and personal experience to pursue doctoral studies. As a pediatric nurse and a clinical nursing instructor, I have observed that parenting can be a daunting challenge, especially in the face of health problems. In my practice, I have seen that enabling and supporting parents immeasurably contributes to children’s and parents’ health and wellbeing. With respect to gender roles, greater burden and responsibility for childcare tends to fall towards mothers within families. This has inspired me to pursue doctoral studies in nursing to examine the work and effects of motherhood in depth. My focus is on postpartum depression and anger in the context of infant behavioral sleep problems.
My research aims to illuminate the relationships between maternal anger, sleep disturbances, and postpartum depression in order to develop interventions that can optimize maternal-child health and wellbeing. I intend to use my findings to support social marketing efforts to increase awareness about anger and sleep loss in postpartum depression, which may help women recognize their depression and prompt them to seek help. In turn, this may help prevent the development of chronic depression and its harmful effects for mothers, children, and families.
Receiving the Dr. Dorothy Kergin Award is a great honour. This award leverages the time and financial resources necessary for my studies and research, for which I am very grateful.