Major Depression in a Sample of Fathers: Prevalence, Correlates, and Associations with Father's Individual and Family Level Functioning

Jacinta M.H. Bronte-Tinkew, Child Trends
Kristin Moore, Child Trends

Depression has not been extensively studied for fathers. This study examines the 12-month prevalence of major depression using the Composite International Diagnostic Interview-Short Form (CIDI-SF). Using data from the Fragile Families and Child Well-being 12-Month Father Survey, the study examines the prevalence of major depression, its socio-demographic correlates, and its associations with fathers’ individual and family-level functioning for a sample of 2,139 resident and 801 non-resident fathers. Results indicate that the 12-month prevalence of major depressive symptoms was 5.4% for resident fathers and 2.8% for non-resident fathers. Findings also suggest that the prevalence of major depression differs significantly based on race, marital status, and employment status. Results of OLS regression models indicate that major depressive is negatively associated with father-child activities (engagement), positively associated with paternal aggravation/stress in parenting, and negatively associated with co-parental conflict and relationship supportiveness. These findings may be important for identifying fathers for whom careful follow-up and intensive treatment for depression are needed.

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Presented in Poster Session 5: Union Formation and Dissolution, Fertility, Family and Well-being