Maternal Chronic Depression Affects Love Styles: A Cohort Study in Southern Brazil


  • Denise Müller Böhm
  • Luciana de Avila Quevedo
  • Fabio Monteiro da Cunha Coelho
  • Luciano Dias Mattos de Souza
  • Mariana Bonati de Matos
  • Jéssica Puchalski Trettim
  • Carolina Coelho Scholl
  • Bárbara Borges Rubin
  • Rochele Castelli
  • Mariane Lopez Molina
  • Karen Amaral Tavares Pinheiro
  • Ricardo Tavares Pinheiro


Given the importance that love has in individuals’ lives, and considering that more specific studies about the relationship between depression and the way people love are lacking, the aim of the current study was to evaluate the effect of major depressive disorder (MDD) on “love styles.” This study was nested in a cohort of adolescent mothers. Women were assessed for MDD at each point of assessment: during pregnancy (T1), at between 30 and 60 postpartum days (T2), and at approximately 30 postpartum months (T3), by using the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI PLUS) tool. The Love Attitudes Scale (LAS) was administered to assess the six love styles at T3. Logistic regression analyses were carried out to express the strength of depression on love styles. We found that chronic major depression had the largest effect on the love styles (low Eros, high Mania, and high Agape), followed by current major depression. However, the same association was not observed in the perinatal period. Thus, the assessment of love style is relevant as it seems that an MDD-related injury in maternal life is related to their attitudes about love and there could be possible harmful consequences of these attitudes to the mother and the whole family.