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Postpartum Psychiatric Episodes Increase Risk Of Divorce, Says Study


A recent study claims that women who suffer postpartum psychiatric episodes are more likely to divorce than those who do not. The study was published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry.

Postpartum depression is a well-established fact. However, information concerning mood disturbances and psychosis is relatively new. While bipolar and schizoaffective disorder are relatively well understood, the connection between mood disturbances and psychosis makes it quite difficult to tell one from the other.

Suffice it to say, mothers who have bipolar or schizoaffective disorder would be at increased risk of suffering postpartum psychosis after a birth.

Just How Likely is Divorce After a Postpartum Episode? 

The study sought to come up with some number that indicated the probability that a couple would get a divorce after a postpartum episode. The study indicated that earlier studies attempted to describe increased marital dissatisfaction after such episodes. This study hoped to determine the probability that a couple would divorce following such an episode.

The study considered women who had only given birth once without prior psychiatric episodes. The subjects were tracked over several years. The study revealed that those with postpartum episodes were more likely than those without to face divorce later in life. The study also revealed that those with more severe postpartum episodes tended to have even greater divorce rates.

The study did not, however, outline the reasons why the marriage failed.

Why is This Valuable to Know? 

Divorce and marriage are usually of particular importance to the government. A high divorce rate costs courts more money and certain sectors of the population consider marriage a sacred religious bond. Those folks in particular are interested in ways to minimize divorce, so targeting specific conflicts within a marriage can have some benefit, particularly if you know why the marriages failed.

The marriages probably failed because the mother, in a state of psychiatric distress, could not provide proper child-rearing. Postpartum depression can last for months, in fact, to qualify as depression the psychiatric distress must span several months of time. Women, having suffered and recovered from postpartum depression or psychosis tend not to want to commit to having another child given the impact on their mental and physical health. Those who enter marriages expecting several children may be forced to look elsewhere. Mothers with psychiatric conditions may not be considered ideal mates for the purpose of raising a family.

In fact, one would expect that any psychiatric episode would put a strain on the marriage. However, having babies is a key consideration for married couples. Mothers who no longer feel safe having children are unlikely to want to put themselves at risk, which makes complete sense. Therapists acting on this information may be able to assuage potential conflicts by providing insights and helping the mother deal with their psychiatric distress.

Talk to a West Palm Beach Divorce Attorney Today

 Bruce S. Rosenwater & Associates represents the interests of spouses seeking divorce. Call our West Palm Beach divorce attorneys today to discuss your options and get the ball rolling on the next chapter of your life.


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