Online Program

Interconnection between Paternal Mental Health Status and Spousal Interaction: Implications upon Family Health

Wednesday, November 4, 2015 : 1:10 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Michael J. Rovito, Ph.D., CHES, FMHI, Department of Health Professions, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL
Frank Johnson, PhD, Department of Public Health and Social Work, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA
Kathy Rovito, MPH, CHES, FMHI, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA
Nicholas Resciniti, BS, Department of Infectious Diseases and Microbiology, Pittsburgh, PA
Andrea Siguenza, Department of Health Professions, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL
Miranda Pelky, BS, University of Central Florida
A substantial amount of existing family health literature predominantly explores the effects of maternal parenting upon the health and wellness of their offspring/dependents. A less extensive body of evidence explores the roles of fathers in the lives of his children/dependents and his family, including his spouse/partner, and even himself. Although there is a recent surge in the amount of interest exploring paternal influences upon family health outcomes, the amount of existing evidence is scarce comparatively to the literature on maternal health dynamics.

We conducted secondary data analysis on the baseline survey of the Fragile Families and Child Well-Being Study, specifically examining father mental well-being and spousal interaction. Father mental well-being was primarily measured by Negative Effect, which was a range of scores 0-84 (our actual range was 0-68) that identified feeling experienced or behavior conducted by the father, then grouped into one of four groups. Spousal Interaction was operationalized by four questions, asking about social activities and problem-solving conducted with the mother in the past month, then placed into one of 4 groups based on the number of times answering yes or no to the questions. Literature has shown a protective factor for married men that they are healthier, report less stress, and overall wellbeing, but this data suggests otherwise, particularly in African-Americans. This presentation explores possible effects upon families.

The relationship between spousal interactions and father’s mental health status will help shape future studies in examining the possible trends among spouses with varying racial and ethnic origins.

Learning Areas:

Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate the interconnection between paternal mental health status and spousal interaction. Assess the impact fathers with adverse mental health status upon family health.

Keyword(s): Partner Involvement, Mental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am published in the male health discipline and conduct original research in family health dynamic areas.
Any relevant financial relationships? Yes

Name of Organization Clinical/Research Area Type of relationship
Men's Health Initiative Male health Advisory Committee/Board

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.