(1) To explore the experience of non-English-speaking mothers with preterm, very low birth weight (VLBW) infants (,1,500 g); and (2) to examine mothers' assessment of a peer support program matching them with linguistically and culturally similar parent-buddies.
An exploratory, qualitative analysis based on grounded theory.
A convenience sample of eight mothers from four of the most prevalent non-English-speaking cultures (Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, and Tamil) in an urban Canadian-teaching hospital.
Non-Anglophone mothers' experience and support in the NICU.
Study mothers experienced intense role disequilibrium during the unanticipated crisis of preterm birth of a VLBW infant; situational crises owing to the high-tech NI CU environment and their infant's condition; and developmental crises with feelings of loss, guilt, helplessness, and anxiety. Language barriers compounded the difficulties. Parent-buddies helped non-English-speaking mothers mobilize their strengths. Culture and language are important determinants of service satisfaction for non-English-speaking mothers. Linguistically congruent parent-to-parent matching increases access to service.