Frank Lake's
"Maternal-Fetal Distress Syndrome"
- An Analysis -

Dissertation of Stephen M. Maret, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology
Caldwell University

". . . (R)esearchers in other sub-fields within psychology, especially developmental, abnormal
and clinical, would do well to investigate the prenatal factor."

-- from the conclusion of Dr. Maret's
"Frank Lake's Maternal-Fetal Distress Syndrome: An Analysis"

British psychiatrist, Frank Lake (1914-1982), believed that the first trimester of embryonal development was the most important part of one's life.

He wrote, "The focus for psychopathology is now, for us, the first trimester of intra-uterine life. These first three months after conception hold more ups and downs, more ecstasies and devastations than we had ever imagined."

In the Conclusions chapter of his doctoral dissertation, Professor Maret analyzes the scientific accuracy of Lake's thesis, after examining in the first four chapters, Lake's evidence for the existence of such a syndrome.

-- John A. Speyrer, Webmeister, The Primal Psychotherapy Page



A. Critique of the M-FDS as a Scientific Paradigm
1. Introduction and The "Old" View
2. Methodology
3. Birth and Pre-Natal Memories
a. Birth and the Fetal Period
b. First Trimester
d. The M-FDS as a Paradigm: The Fetal Period
e. The M-FDS as a Paradigm: The First Trimester
B. Critique of the M-FDS as a Theological Paradigm
1. Lake's Methodology
a. Theological and Biblical Method
b. Integration of Psychology and Theology
2. Lake's Theodicy
C. Final Conclusions

  • Stephen M. Maret has authored a book comprised of material from his dissertation entitled, The Prenatal Person: Frank Lake's Maternal-Fetal Distress Syndrome. University Press of America: Lanham, MD. ISBN: 0-7618-2501-0.

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