Strengthening Peer Mentoring Relationships for New Mothers: A Qualitative Analysis

Law, Hwok Hong, Jackson, Ben, Tan, Xuan Hui, Teague, Samantha, Krause, Amanda, Putter, Kaila, Du'cane, Monique, Gibson, Lisa, Bulles, Kelby F, Barkin, Jennifer, and Dimmock, James A. (2022) Strengthening Peer Mentoring Relationships for New Mothers: A Qualitative Analysis. Journal of Clinical Medicine, 11. 6009.

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(1) Background: The transition to motherhood can be challenging, especially for first-time mothers, and can accompany maternal distress. Social support—such as that offered by peers— can be important in assisting mothers to manage such distress. Although primiparous mothers often seek out and value peer support programs, few researchers have investigated factors that may influence the strength of relationships in non-professional maternal peer support programs. Insight into these factors can be key to enhancing the success of future peer support interventions.

(2) Methods: Reflexive thematic analysis was applied to data gathered from 36 semi-structured interviews conducted with 14 primiparous mothers and 17 peer mentors in a peer support program.

(3) Results: Four themes related to successful mentorship were identified: expectations of peer relationship, independence of peer mentor, contact, and similarities. (4) Conclusions: For primiparous mothers who are developing their support network, these factors appear important for promoting close and effective peer support relationships. Interventions that harness the dynamics between these factors may contribute to more successful peer support relationships and mental health outcomes for participants.

Item ID: 76296
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2077-0383
Keywords: Australia; perinatal; stress; postpartum; thematic analysis
Copyright Information: © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (
Funders: Western Australian Department of Health (Healthway)
Projects and Grants: 32569
Date Deposited: 18 Oct 2022 01:04
FoR Codes: 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5203 Clinical and health psychology > 520304 Health psychology @ 70%
52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5205 Social and personality psychology > 520505 Social psychology @ 30%
SEO Codes: 20 HEALTH > 2005 Specific population health (excl. Indigenous health) > 200509 Women's and maternal health @ 100%
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