Family structure and depression: A study of Puerto Rican women in New York

Jose Raul Rodriguez-Gomez, Fordham University


A review of minority mental health literature over the past ten years reveals an urgent need for research that may help to elucidate some of the problems and characteristics that contribute to the development of mental health problems, especially among Puerto Rican women, who are considered a high risk group. This research focuses on the depressive symptomatology, as evaluated by the Center for Epidemological Studies Depression Scale, of Puerto Rican women living in New York with specific interest in whether female heads of household and women in intact families differ. Because these two groups vary on their socioeconomic characteristics, it was hypothesized that the single female heads of household group would report a higher depressive symptomatology score than the women in intact families primarily because of their disadvantaged position. The major finding of this research was consistent with this hypothesis. The group of women heading a household showed a significantly higher depressive symptomatology than those women in intact families. We also found that the socioeconomic status set of variables are relevant not only to explain different outcomes in depressive symptomatology but in addition, that this group of variables are also important when we try to explain differences in depressive score among female head of households and women in intact families.

Subject Area

Sociology|Minority & ethnic groups|Sociology|Families & family life|Personal relationships|Sociology|Psychotherapy

Recommended Citation

Rodriguez-Gomez, Jose Raul, "Family structure and depression: A study of Puerto Rican women in New York" (1993). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9324625.