Mommy influencers: Helpful or harmful? The relationship between exposure to mommy influencers and perceived parental self-efficacy among mothers and primigravida

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Abstract

Questions are raised about the potential effects of (future) mothers’ regular exposure to the perfect representations of motherhood by mommy influencers. Due to the regular exposure, mothers might see these images as the norm but are not always able to meet with these standards themselves. Based on a survey among mothers and primigravida this study analyzed the association between visiting mommy influencer profiles on Instagram, comparing oneself with these online mothers and perceived parental self-efficacy. For mothers, it was found that both exposure to the content and comparison with the mommy influencers were related to lower perceived parental self-efficacy. For primigravida, the direction of the relationship was different: Regular exposure to mommy influencer content was related to higher parental self-efficacy, meaning that this exposure was helpful. The implications of this study for (future) mothers, mommy influencers, and practitioners who guide mothers through the transition to motherhood will be discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages20
JournalNew Media & Society
Volume26
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Apr 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This research was funded by the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO-Vlaanderen), grant number 12W1720N. The funding sources have no involvement in the study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2022.

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