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Persevering Through Postpartum Fatigue

by Runquist, Jennifer Jo.

Abstract (Summary)
Postpartum Fatigue is a predominant concern of women after childbirth. Postpartum Fatigue is a pervasive and distressing experience that has negative healthrelated effects on women, infants, and families. Using grounded theory this study explored the process of postpartum fatigue in 13 women from diverse contexts in the sixweek period after childbirth. The human process of Persevering emerged from the data. Persevering explained how participants continued Caregiving in the face of all but the most debilitating Postpartum Fatigue. Caregiving of the infant and older children was the outcome of the Persevering process. The need and ability to persevere emerged out of relationships between Postpartum Fatigue, Self-Transcendence, and Coping Techniques. Persevering is depicted by the model “Persevering through Postpartum Fatigue.” The model has five major concepts: Influencing Factors, Postpartum Fatigue, Coping Techniques, Self-Transcendence, and Caregiving. Influencing Factors is a group of factors that participants identified as having the most influence on Postpartum Fatigue across the first six weeks postpartum. The three Influencing Factors were: Maternal- Infant Sleep Pattern Conflict, Infant Characteristics, and Fatigue Limiting Factors. Postpartum Fatigue was characterized by four dimensions: Mental, Physical, Stress-Worry, and Frustration. Each of these dimensions had empirical, contextdependent manifestations. Participants responded to Postpartum Fatigue by using a wide variety of Coping Techniques. Coping Techniques helped women manage Postpartum fatigue. Self-Transcendence was an ongoing human capacity called upon by the women to facilitate perseverance. Through the meaning and purpose ascribed to their infants and 14 children, participants found the strength to persevere in caregiving through all but the most debilitating Postpartum Fatigue. The process of Persevering is explained through the relationships of Postpartum Fatigue, Coping Techniques, and Self-Transcendence. Profound negative feelings and an overwhelming desire to rest and sleep brought on by Postpartum Fatigue were offset by the use of Coping Techniques and Self-Transcendence, which enabled women to persevere in the provision of care to their children. “Persevering through Postpartum Fatigue” contributes a more explanatory view of Postpartum Fatigue as it is expressed in the everyday lives of postpartum women. 15
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School:The University of Arizona

School Location:USA - Arizona

Source Type:Master's Thesis

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