Compiled and edited by Abigail E. Page, Emily H. Emmott and Sarah Myers.
It is widely acknowledged that women with children require high levels of social support to promote their, and their children’s, health and wellbeing. However, studies on social support often take overly narrow Western perspectives, leading to biased understandings of support and its impact on maternal-child health. We know social support is complex, coming in different forms and from different sources, influenced by environmental context. In this multidisciplinary special issue, they explore social support from different perspectives: While Western norms assume that childcare comes under the responsibility of mothers, in reality, childrearing is widely shared and supported in different ways across societies. Overall, a multidisciplinary approach deepens our understanding of social support and its consequences for mothers and children.