This longitudinal study which began in May 2020 examines the effects of COVID-19 on women during the perinatal period (pregnancy and postpartum). Through our online surveys and Zoom-based observational design, we hope to learn more about stress, well being, resilience, and social support among mothers and their infants during this unprecedented time. To date, we have enrolled over 2000 women and are now in Wave 3 of our data collection.
Funding: The Family Health and Resiliency Fund
This NSF-Funded longitudinal study began in April 2020 in collaboration with Boston University to assess the physical and emotional well being of young adults during the COVID-19 pandemic. Young adults who are 18-30 years old and currently reside in the United States or receiving education from a U.S. institution are welcomed to participate. To date we have enrolled over 1400 participants and are currently in Wave 3 of data collection.
Funding: National Science Foundation (2027553)
Building Our Bonds Authentically (BOBA)
This Zoom-based observational study focuses on the conversations between Asian American parents and youth (12-18 years) about current issues that affect Asian Americans (e.g., racism). More details to come.
Funding: The Family Health and Resiliency Fund, National Institutes of Health (NIMH 1R21HD107512-01A1, NIMH 1R01 MH129360-01)
Life Experiences After Pregnancy (LEAP) Study
This study examines the experiences of people who have given birth in the last 6 months. Through surveys and Zoom interviews, we hope to learn more about the well-being of people in the postpartum period. We have just wrapped up the first wave of data collection.
Funding: Harvard Medical School Dupont Warren and Livingston Grants
Conducted in collaboration with Boston University and The MGH Center of Cross-Cultural Student Emotion Wellness, we are assessing the COVID-19 experiences, parenting, stress, social support, and resilience among Chinese and Korean immigrant during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Funding: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Rapid Funding
Chinese Immigrant Parent Culture and Experience Project
This project aims to understand the experiences of immigrant Chinese parents through in-depth phone interviews. The goal is to learn more about their immigration and cultural experiences and how that impacts their views as a parent of youth.
Funding: MGH Center for Cross-Cultural Student Emotional Wellness, Brigham and Women's Tynan Faculty Research Fellowship
Maternal-Infant Mood and Emotion Study (MIMES)
This project aims to improve the lives of women from pregnancy into the postpartum, in particular those who experience mental health problems such as psychosis and depression. We document biological and psychosocial risks that may lead to later behavioral and cognitive problems in children.
Funding: National Institutes of Health (NIMH K23 MH 107714-01 A1)
Baby Emotional Experiences Study (BEES)
This project aims to understand the emotional experiences and development of babies with mothers who have had experiences with depressed mood. As part of this study, mothers and 16 week old babies come in for one session visit to our laboratory to play where we assess behavior and physiological responses.
Funding: National Institutes of Health (NIMH K23 MH 107714-01 A1)
This project focuses on the well being of Chinese immigrant families. In collaboration with Wellesley College and University of Massachusetts Boston, over 250 families have participated in our work, through quantitative and qualitative measures assessing parenting stress, child behavior, health outcomes, and experiences of separation between family members.
Funding: Massachusetts Department of Mental Health (SCDMH82101008006), U Mass Boston Public Service Grant/Proposal Development Grant, American Sociological Association, American Psychological Foundation, Harvard Catalyst (NIH UL1 TR001102)
Women's Emotional Life and Livelihood Study (WELLS): Psychosocial Health and Well-Being in Chinese Immigrant Women
This is a study that examines the psychosocial experiences of Chinese immigrant women currently obtaining obstetric/gynecology care from South Cove Community Health Center. Our goal is to understand through survey report, social and emotional experiences that take place during and outside of pregnancy.
Funding: Hope and Grace Foundation, National Consortium on Psychosocial Stress, Spirituality, and Health/Spirituality Templeton Foundation Pilot Grant
Studies of College Student Stress and Mental Health
In collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital and Willamette University, our work examines psychosocial health and behaviors and mental health outcomes among US college students through the National College Health Survey administered by the American College Health Association.
Online Assessment of Emotion and Cognition in Mother and Preschoolers
In collaboration with Claremont McKenna College, this pilot study examines the feasibility of collecting observational, questionnaire, and biological markers (hair and nail cortisol) data from mothers and their preschool children through an Internet portal.
Funding: Claremont McKenna College Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
Studies of Perinatal Life Stress
New York City and Massachusetts
Risk factors of perinatal mental health problems often emerge during prior to pregnancy and in the prenatal period. In this set of studies, the role of sociodemographic risk, such as race/ethnic disparities, and prenatal life stress on postpartum depression in New York City and Massachusetts are examined through the PRAMS (Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System).
Funding: Harvard Catalyst (NIH UL1 TR001102), Harvard Medical School (Office of Diversity and Community Partnership)
Caregiver Experiences and Child Health Study
Fujian and Beijing, China
In collaboration with Wellesley College, this project looks at socio-cultural factors and self regulatory mechanisms that might lead to obesity in low-income Chinese immigrant families. We examine how caregiving practices from grandparents may have an impact on children’s health. An innovative component is the transnational nature of the data collection, which will produce data from caregivers in both the U.S. and in China, countries where obesity is a major public health issue for children of Chinese backgrounds.
Funding: American Psychological Foundation Visionary Grant
Maternal and Infant Chronic Stress Study
Sao Paulo, Brazil
In collaboration with the Harvard School of Public Health and the Universidade de São Paulo, we are examining the use of hair cortisol as a biomarker of chronic stress in mothers and infants from the São Paulo Western Region Cohort Project, a longitudinal study exploring the long-term effects of early life adversity in low-income communities in Brazil.
Funding: David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies Faculty Grant
Journey in Parenting with Transnationally Separated Families
As part of a collaboration with Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center, University of Massachusetts Boston, and Wellesley College, we are evaluating the use of a parenting support program with Chinese immigrant families who have experienced transnational separation, with the goal of adapting evidence-based interventions to address the unmet needs of this particular population of Chinese immigrant families.
Funding: U Mass Medical Center Community Research innovative Scholars Program (CRISP)
Asian American Family Program
Lexington, Brookline, Greater Boston
The purpose of this project is to address the mental health needs of youth within Asian immigrant communities within Greater Boston. Taking a family perspective, we are conducting focus groups with local parents, college students, and youth, and designing and implementing a series of workshops that address mental health needs within Asian American families.
Funding: CHNA 18 Community Grant, Brookline Community Foundation Grant, MGH Center for Cross Cultural Student Emotional Wellness
The Ties that Bind – Perinatal Program
Together with Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center and South Cove Community Health Center, we are implementing a group based prenatal care for Chinese immigrant women. Cohorts of women will then be enrolled in a postpartum support group. This is a coordinated effort that integrates group programming across a health and social services within Chinatown, aimed at increasing social support and facilitating access to caregiving and child care resources during the perinatal period, with the goal of decreasing stress and mental health concerns.
Funding: Hope and Grace Foundation