Measuring postnatal demoralisation: adaptation of the Demoralisation Scale-II (DS-II) for postnatal use

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Abstract

Objective: To examine the psychometric properties of the Demoralisation Scale II (DS-II) and adapt it for use with women in the postnatal period. Background: Demoralisation is a psychological state characterised by a sense of incompetence and feelings of helplessness and hopelessness in response to a stressful situation. The postnatal period is a life stage of many disruptions. Women may lose their confidence and become demoralised if feeling unprepared for the tasks of motherhood. The DS-II is a 16-item scale developed among cancer patients, but with content that is also relevant postnatally, including items on sense of failure, helplessness, hopelessness, isolation, entrapment and loss of purpose. Methods: Rasch analysis was used to investigate the psychometric properties of the DS-II and refine the scale for postnatal use. Results: Participants were 209 women admitted with their babies to a residential early parenting programme. A 14-item revised scale was derived, the Postnatal DS-II, showing good psychometric properties, discriminant validity and sensitivity to change, and being well targeted to the sample. Conclusion: The Postnatal DS-II could have utility as an assessment tool, helping clinicians to understand better women’s postnatal experiences, assess the effectiveness of interventions and communicate with women in a meaningful and non-stigmatising way.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)561-577
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Reproductive and Infant Psychology
Volume36
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Oct 2018

Keywords

  • Demoralisation
  • mental health
  • parenting
  • postpartum period
  • psychometrics
  • women

Cite this

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title = "Measuring postnatal demoralisation: adaptation of the Demoralisation Scale-II (DS-II) for postnatal use",
abstract = "Objective: To examine the psychometric properties of the Demoralisation Scale II (DS-II) and adapt it for use with women in the postnatal period. Background: Demoralisation is a psychological state characterised by a sense of incompetence and feelings of helplessness and hopelessness in response to a stressful situation. The postnatal period is a life stage of many disruptions. Women may lose their confidence and become demoralised if feeling unprepared for the tasks of motherhood. The DS-II is a 16-item scale developed among cancer patients, but with content that is also relevant postnatally, including items on sense of failure, helplessness, hopelessness, isolation, entrapment and loss of purpose. Methods: Rasch analysis was used to investigate the psychometric properties of the DS-II and refine the scale for postnatal use. Results: Participants were 209 women admitted with their babies to a residential early parenting programme. A 14-item revised scale was derived, the Postnatal DS-II, showing good psychometric properties, discriminant validity and sensitivity to change, and being well targeted to the sample. Conclusion: The Postnatal DS-II could have utility as an assessment tool, helping clinicians to understand better women’s postnatal experiences, assess the effectiveness of interventions and communicate with women in a meaningful and non-stigmatising way.",
keywords = "Demoralisation, mental health, parenting, postpartum period, psychometrics, women",
author = "Irene Bobevski and McKenzie, {Dean P.} and Heather Rowe and Kissane, {David W.} and Clarke, {David M.} and Jane Fisher",
year = "2018",
month = "10",
day = "20",
doi = "10.1080/02646838.2018.1519781",
language = "English",
volume = "36",
pages = "561--577",
journal = "Journal of Reproductive and Infant Psychology",
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T1 - Measuring postnatal demoralisation: adaptation of the Demoralisation Scale-II (DS-II) for postnatal use

AU - Bobevski, Irene

AU - McKenzie, Dean P.

AU - Rowe, Heather

AU - Kissane, David W.

AU - Clarke, David M.

AU - Fisher, Jane

PY - 2018/10/20

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N2 - Objective: To examine the psychometric properties of the Demoralisation Scale II (DS-II) and adapt it for use with women in the postnatal period. Background: Demoralisation is a psychological state characterised by a sense of incompetence and feelings of helplessness and hopelessness in response to a stressful situation. The postnatal period is a life stage of many disruptions. Women may lose their confidence and become demoralised if feeling unprepared for the tasks of motherhood. The DS-II is a 16-item scale developed among cancer patients, but with content that is also relevant postnatally, including items on sense of failure, helplessness, hopelessness, isolation, entrapment and loss of purpose. Methods: Rasch analysis was used to investigate the psychometric properties of the DS-II and refine the scale for postnatal use. Results: Participants were 209 women admitted with their babies to a residential early parenting programme. A 14-item revised scale was derived, the Postnatal DS-II, showing good psychometric properties, discriminant validity and sensitivity to change, and being well targeted to the sample. Conclusion: The Postnatal DS-II could have utility as an assessment tool, helping clinicians to understand better women’s postnatal experiences, assess the effectiveness of interventions and communicate with women in a meaningful and non-stigmatising way.

AB - Objective: To examine the psychometric properties of the Demoralisation Scale II (DS-II) and adapt it for use with women in the postnatal period. Background: Demoralisation is a psychological state characterised by a sense of incompetence and feelings of helplessness and hopelessness in response to a stressful situation. The postnatal period is a life stage of many disruptions. Women may lose their confidence and become demoralised if feeling unprepared for the tasks of motherhood. The DS-II is a 16-item scale developed among cancer patients, but with content that is also relevant postnatally, including items on sense of failure, helplessness, hopelessness, isolation, entrapment and loss of purpose. Methods: Rasch analysis was used to investigate the psychometric properties of the DS-II and refine the scale for postnatal use. Results: Participants were 209 women admitted with their babies to a residential early parenting programme. A 14-item revised scale was derived, the Postnatal DS-II, showing good psychometric properties, discriminant validity and sensitivity to change, and being well targeted to the sample. Conclusion: The Postnatal DS-II could have utility as an assessment tool, helping clinicians to understand better women’s postnatal experiences, assess the effectiveness of interventions and communicate with women in a meaningful and non-stigmatising way.

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