Graduate School of Nursing Dissertations



Publication Date


Document Type

Dissertation, Doctoral


Graduate School of Nursing

Dissertation Committee Chair

Donna J. Perry, PhD, RN


postpartum depression, phenomenology, Haitian, immigrant

Subject Categories

Maternal and Child Health | Mental and Social Health | Nursing | Psychiatry and Psychology | Women's Health


Purpose: The purpose of this interpretive phenomenological study is to explore the lived experience of Haitian immigrant women living in Massachusetts with PPD.

Specific Aims: Aim 1: To explore the lived experience of PPD among Haitian immigrant women. Aim 2: To explore how the experience of being Haitian influences Haitian immigrant women in their response to PPD.

Framework: Leininger's Theory of Cultural Care (1988) guided the phenomenological approach and data collection. The Transcultural Care Decision & Action model contains three predictive modes for guiding nursing care judgments, decisions, or actions to provide care.

Design: Interpretive phenomenology guided this qualitative study. Individual face-to-face interviews were conducted. The data from each interview were transcribed into a written document and analyzed using the Crist and Tanner five-step process.

Results: This study yielded two themes; each theme has three dimensions. The first theme is “Feeling Disconnected” with three dimensions: (a) lack of support; (b) partner conflict; and, (c) nostalgia of Haiti. The second theme is “Feeling Reconnected” with three dimensions: (a) realization of needed help; (b) spirituality; and, (c) resilience.

Conclusion: This study provides insight into the lived experience of Haitian women with PPD. Awareness of Haitian women’s actual experiences with PPD will help health care providers to identify and provide culturally appropriate care to this population.



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