Genetic counselors' experiences with paternal involvement in prenatal genetic counseling sessions: An exploratory investigation

Richard S. Lafans, Patricia Mc Carthy Veach, Bonnie S. LeRoy

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Limited research exists concerning male partners' participation in prenatal genetic counseling (R. Kenen, A. C. M. Smith, C. Watkins, & C. Zuber-Pitore, J. Genet Corns 9, 33-45, 2000). To further understand paternal participation, we interviewed 17 experienced prenatal genetic counselors to assess their perspectives on this issue. We investigated 6 research questions: 1) How do genetic counselors define paternal involvement, 2) how do they determine and address problematic involvement, 3) what factors influence involvement, 4) was paternal involvement addressed in training, 5) how might training be improved, and 6) how do participant strategies for addressing involvement compare to those of marriage/family therapists? Qualitative analysis revealed that 1) participants regard paternal involvement as important; 2) most address problematic involvement with strategies similar to those of marital/family therapists; 3) influential factors include male partner's characteristics, the couple's relationship (including cultural practices), and pregnancy factors; and 4) participants received little or no training on paternal involvement and recommended didactic and experiential activities. Implications and research recommendations are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)219-242
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Genetic Counseling
Volume12
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2003

Keywords

  • Paternal involvement
  • Prenatal genetic counseling
  • Prenatal testing

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