The Ministry of Lisa Copen

Lisa Copen, Founder of Rest Ministries which serves the chronically ill, shares about mothering, illness, ministry and more.

Sad Dads do Influence Baby’s Mood

New Daddy Kissing Baby

The good news? Dads do matter in the lives of an infant more than previously thought. The bad news? If Dad is depressed, it impacts the life of a baby even more so than previously thought too!

Any woman married to a man who has dealt with depression has always known how much the mood of her spouse can rub off onto her children and herself, but now a new study published in the July issue of Pediatrics has proven it to be so.

Information on the study:

To see how parental depression was related to excessive crying, van den Berg‘s team gathered data on symptoms of depression among parents of 4,426 infants who were 2 months old.

Not surprisingly, “Researchers found a 30 percent higher risk for depression among parents whose infant cried excessively.” Anyone who has had a crying baby hours upon end know how it can get discouraging and downright depressing!

But the study also showed that, “a dad with symptoms of depression was twice as likely to have an infant who cried excessively as was a dad who was not depressed, the study found.”

People who live with chronic illness have a much greater risk factor for dealing with clinical depression. And the feelings of having a child who is crying and not being able to figure out what is wrong, can be overwhelming. Parents with illness can also be dealing with money concerns, medical issues, balancing where one’s energy is spent, and worrying about the future.

But being  a parent can also be one of the most exciting, rewarding, and wonderful gifts God gives us. John 14:27 says, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world gives, give I to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” Not only is this good advice for our own lives, but because our moods and our worries effect those we love the most, even the smallest babies.

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