2023 Undergraduate Research Showcase


Do Gender Ideology and Social Support Impact the Mental Health of European Mothers?

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date


Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Kristin Snopkowski


Evolutionary anthropologists consider the task of raising children to be a cooperative effort in humans, where mothers can rely on a social network of kin and non-kin, called alloparents, for help. In today’s societies however, humans have shifted towards the practice of a nuclear family, in which children live and are raised mostly within a small family unit. This and other factors such as migration and the acceptance of certain societal gender roles and ideologies regarding parenting may reduce the ability of mothers to access and receive social support. Research has largely shown that social support is a protective factor that can help decrease negative mental health outcomes, including postpartum depression in women. What is not very well understood is how gender ideology impacts the mechanism by which mothers receive support, and whether a woman’s personal views regarding gender roles have an effect on mental health. In this study, we explore the correlates between gender ideology, social support and mental health outcomes of mothers with children up to age 14 using data from the Generations and Data Program (GGP). The GGP is a large longitudinal study across multiple countries in Europe providing high-quality data to researchers.

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