Project on Parental Couples

Couple relationship is one of the most significative relationship in adulthood. Besides, a satisfying romantic relationship is one of the most important determinants of happiness and physical and psychological wellbeing. However, the birth of a child represents a developmental stage and a major life event that may be accompanied by a lowering of psychosocial functioning, for each partner and for the parental couple. Indeed, it typically causes significant structural changes and new pressures on a couple’s emotional and material resources.

This project aims to understand the relationship between interactions among parents of young children and their psychological and couple well-being, and to compare the different trajectories in terms of family history of each parent. As such, we aim at better understanding the influence of co-parents’ relationship on child’s adjustment.

This project’s outcomes will provide significant information for the development of educative and preventive programs that are targeted for individuals, couples, and families who are expecting the birth of a child.



The project currently benefits from a Canadian Institutes of Health Research grant and is entitled A longitudinal dyadic investigation of the role of interpersonal trauma and couple relationships on parents' mental health and child adjustment. The research team includes Natacha Godbout (director of TRACE) and Alison Paradis, Ph.D. as principal investigators, and Marie-Eve Daspe, Ph.D., Catherine Herba, Ph.D., and Martine Hébert, Ph.D.

Doctoral students who have worked on this project include: Gaëlle Bakhos, Mathilde Baumann, Luciana Lassance, Francis Morissette-Harvey, and Camille-Andrée Rassart.


This project was initiated with a grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, and was entitled A systemic study of the well-being of parental couples: Associations with childhood interpersonal trauma. Research team included Natacha Godbout (principal investigator), Sophie Bergeron, Ph.D., Martine Hébert, Ph.D., and Stéphane Sabourin, Ph.D.



Image pour projet
Couple with a baby child
A woman and a man with a child looking at an electronic tablet in a bed