The results of this study show that for Irish primary school children, the probability of psychiatric illness is positively associated with low IQ and reading difficulties, large family size, being a boy rather than a girl, and having a mother who is dissatisfied with her marriage or her role as mother.
For the mothers of these children, depression is positively associated with having an unemployed husband, and with being dissatisfied with the level of family income, with their relations with their relatives and their neighbours, with the opportunity foe leisure, and with their performance in their role as a parent.
The stress of unemployment, financial difficulties, lack of social support, and inadequate leisure opportunities appears to leave mothers prone to depression, which has the effects of undermining their parenting ability and makes it more likely that their children develop child psychiatric difficulties.
Family unemployment and economic disadvantage significantly effects mothers health.
Michael Fitzgerald was the Henry Marsh Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Trinity College, Dublin. He is the first professor of child and adolescent psychiatry in Ireland. He was the first Professor of Child Psychiatry in Ireland in 1996. A Clinical and Research Consultant to the Irish Society for Autism and an Honorary member of the Northern Ireland Institute of Human Relations. He has a doctorate in the area of autism and has been a researcher in this area since 1973. He trained at St. Patrick’s Hospital Dublin, Chicago Medical School, and The Maudsley Hospital and the National Hospital for Nervous Diseases in London. He has clinically diagnosed over 2600 individuals with Autism and Asperger’s syndrome and has served on the Government Task Force on Autism and the family as well as similar task forces for the Department of Health in Northern Ireland. He has contributed to National and International Journals on autism another relevant topics. He has written, co –written, edited or co-edited over 24 books.. Read more