Date of Award:

1972

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Family, Consumer, and Human Development

Advisor/Chair:

Anne Kernaleguen

Abstract

The first objective of this study was to investigate the adjustment of women during pregnancy through various indices, namely: level of anxiety, attitudes to pregnancy, and perception of body-image boundaries, and to investigate the relationship among these indices. A second objective was to determine if a significant rank order of values inferred through clothing exists among pregnant women, and to relate these values to the measures of adjustment. The comparison of women by trimester and gravidity on the measures of adjustment and the inferred values, was a third objective. The theoretical framework proposed that adjustment to the stress of pregnancy has important implications for the mental health and welfare of mother and child. It was also based on research findings that the subconscious evaluation of body boundaries is an index of adjustment, as is level of anxiety and attitudes to pregnancy_ The interdisciplinary approach to the study of clothing postulates that clothing can facilitate adjustment by serving as an extension of self, as reinforcement of boundaries, and as a communicative factor. Value analysis is central to understanding and predicting behavior, therefore, the values pregnant women seek to reinforce through clothing should provide insight into the function of clothing in adjustive behavior. The sample of 56 pregnant women was selected on a non-random basis from prenatal clinics in southwest. Saskatchewan. The instruments administered were: Cattell's IPAT Anxiety Scale, Grimm's Hel.P. pregnancy Questionnaire, Holtzman Inkblot Protocols, Kernaleguen's Inferred Values of Clothing Inventory, and a General Information Questionnaire. The analyses revealed: (1) significant association among anxiety and factors in attitudes and adjustment to pregnancy, and some of the inferred values of clothing; (2) relationships among factors in attitudes and adjustment to pregnancy and the four inferred values of clothing; (3) positive correlation between Barrier and Penetration, but no significant relationships among Barrier or Penetration and the other indices of adjustment or the inferred values; (4) significant difference in Penetration among subjects in each trimester of pregnancy; (5) no significant difference between primigravidae and multigravidae on any of the variables; (6) significant rank order of inferred values among all subjects, by trimester and gravidity, with value for physical comfort ranked highest. and the social values ranked loweste The theoretical framework received some support. High level of anxiety was related to negative attitudes to pregnancy. The relationship of the measures of adjustment with the more subconscious concept of body-image was not clearly establishede A number of recommendations are included.

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