Mother Infant Study



















The MSU Mother-Infant Study began in 1998.* We recruited 206 pregnant women to participate in this study. Women were between the ages of 18-40, fluent in English, in their last trimester of pregnancy, and each had a romantic partner for at least six weeks during the pregnancy. They were recruited from 52 different sites in the community, with a focus on locations that served pregnant and parenting women.


Women were first interviewed during their last trimester of pregnancy (T1) and then two months after the birth of their baby (T2). Subsequent interviews of women and their children have occurred every year at the time of the child's birthday starting when the children were one year old (T3, T4, T5, T6, T7). We are currently in the process of collecting T8 data.


The study is focused on understanding the influences of domestic violence on the lives of women and children. Half of our original sample experienced some level of abuse from their partners (from mild to severe) and half served as the control group. Over time, however, some women have moved into and some out of abusive relationships. We are interested in what creates conditions of risk and resilience for these women and children. We also study how women's parenting and mental health as well as the social and psychological adjustment of their children are affected by various levels of hardship posed by domestic violence and other life circumstances.



*National Institutes of Justice 8-7958-MI-IJ and Centers for Disease Control RO1-CCR518519-01