The Meaning and Experience of an Origianal Lullaby for Parents of Hospitalized Infants

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Maestro-Scherer, Amanda
Master of Arts in Music Therapy
The stress on parents of hospitalized infants is great. Living in the hospital with their child, they may fear for their child’s life and while becoming removed from their normal lives. Oftentimes, they do not have opportunities to express or feel as they are in survival mode. In this study, a music therapy intervention engaging parents of hospitalized infants in an original songwriting experience was examined, to look at both meaning and experience of the process and product of music therapy. The research questions included: (a) what is the experience of a therapeutic songwriting intervention for parents of a hospitalized infant? (b) What are the effects of therapeutic songwriting on parental perception of the hospital experience and the care being provided to them? (c) How does writing an original song impact emotional health and coping of parents with hospitalized infants? (d) How does composing an individualize message for their infant affect parents’ relationship with their child? (e) What meaning does the song currently hold, and what do the parents feel it will mean in the future? The data was collected in narrative form and analyzed for repetitive, novel and significant themes. Seven participants completed all steps of the process. The final product includes the analysis of these interviews.