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The validation of the brief COPE in a Belgian perinatal population

van Gils, Yannic; Bleijenbergh, Roxanne; Brosens, Charlotte; Van den Branden, Laura; Rimaux, Sophie; Kuipers, Yvonne J.


Yannic van Gils

Roxanne Bleijenbergh

Charlotte Brosens

Laura Van den Branden

Sophie Rimaux


Introduction: The Brief Coping Orientation to Problems Experienced (Brief-COPE) measures individuals’ coping strategies. There is limited evidence on the psychometric properties of this measure in a perinatal population. The aim of this study is to explore the psychometric properties of the Brief COPE in pregnant and postpartum women.

Methods: The Dutch/Flemish version of the Brief-COPE was administrated in a sample of 754 antenatal (n=432) and postpartum (n=322) women living in Belgium. Exploratory factor analyses assessed the factor structure of the Brief-COPE and its convergent validity in an antenatal and postpartum sample. Cronbach’s alpha was calculated for internal consistency reliability of the Brief-COPE items.

Results: Exploratory factor analysis showed a five-factor antenatal model, presented by the subscales: (1) Active coping (α=0.86), (2) Self-blame and Disengagement (α=0.70), (3) Alcohol use (α=0.96), (4) Humour (α=0.79), and (5) Spirituality (α=0.81). For the postpartum sample, a three-factor model emerged, presented by the subscales: (1) Active coping (α=0.85), (2) Self-blame (α=0.85) and (3) Spirituality (α=0.74).

Conclusions: We observed differences and similarities in coping strategies between antenatal and postpartum women – information to be of merit for clinical practice and research. The Brief-COPE is a promising tool for the use of identifying women’s coping strategies during pregnancy and the postpartum period, specifically for women in a similar cultural context as the women in this study, mainly in terms of antenatal alcohol use.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jul 17, 2022
Online Publication Date Aug 8, 2022
Publication Date 2022-10
Deposit Date Aug 8, 2022
Publicly Available Date Aug 9, 2023
Journal Maternal and Child Health Journal
Print ISSN 1092-7875
Electronic ISSN 1573-6628
Publisher Springer
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 26
Pages 2050-2059
Keywords Antenatal, Coping, Factor analysis, Perinatal, Postpartum
Public URL


The Validation Of The Brief COPE In A Belgian Perinatal Population (accepted version) (1 Mb)

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