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Temas em Psicologia

Print version ISSN 1413-389X


MEDEIROS, Fernanda Borges de  and  PICCININI, Cesar Augusto. Transition to fatherhood in the context of prematurity: from pregnancy to the third month after discharge. Temas psicol. [online]. 2019, vol.27, n.4, pp. 1021-1037. ISSN 1413-389X.

The present study aimed to investigate the transition to fatherhood in the context of preterm birth from hospitalization in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) to the third month after discharge, through a collective case study. Three fathers of preterm female infants participated in the study. All the fathers were living with the babies' mothers. The reports of the participants were examined through qualitative analysis. Reports on the pregnancy and birth revealed intense anxiety, emphasizing feelings of helplessness and concerns with the wife's health, survival and emotional condition. After the delivery, the participants were very dedicated and caring as fathers, especially during the first days of life of their infants, including frequent visits to the baby and providing emotional support to the wife. Three months after discharge, reports of the fathers showed how their daughters, although healthy, were still perceived as very vulnerable babies, triggering a series of care actions and, therefore, having important repercussions in their lives. The need to provide psychological interventions not only for mothers but also for fathers of preterm children should be highlighted.

Keywords : Fatherhood; preterm birth; neonatal intensive care unit; pregnancy; childbirth.

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