This paper describes the use of the MCR FIRST score. The score has evolved as a method of measuring certain aspects of a mother's caring for her newborn baby. The factors included are feeding, interest, response, speech and touch, and these have been combined into a numerical score. The results for 100 mothers who were assessed on days 1, 3 and 5 postpartum are presented. The MCR FIRST score is distinguished by its simplicity of use in clinical work and may be helpful in recognizing potential impairment of mother-child relationships during the early postpartum period.