Published for the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology by IRL Press
Human Reproduction vol:14 issue:12 pages:3133-3137
This study compared parenting stress and psychosocial well-being among parents with 1 year old twins conceived in three different ways: (i) spontaneously without any medical assistance (54 families), (ii) spontaneously following hormonal treatment (25 families) and (iii) following in-vitro fertilization (IVF) or artificial insemination (AI) with the semen of the social father (24 families). The investigation included the Parenting Stress Index (PSI) and the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-30). Since the presence of older children differed significantly between the three groups, this factor was included in the statistical analysis. Overall, no significant differences were found between the three study groups, either for the mothers or for the fathers. Nevertheless, we found a main effect of the presence of older children and an interaction effect of the presence of older children and the conception mode on some of the scales for the mothers: first-time mothers showed significantly higher stress related to parental competence, health and the partner relationship compared with mothers who had older children. First-time mothers with a history of infertility obtained significantly higher stress scores for parental competence and health and showed lower psychosocial well-being compared with naturally conceiving first-time mothers and mothers with a history of infertility who already had children.