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Informal care as relationship: the case of the Magnificent Seven

Continual and/or repetitive informal caring and the part childhood, developmental and socially constructed identity play roles in adult informal care, form the background to the questions of why individuals gravitate toward such relationships and why they often continue to care in the face of overwhelming obstacles. A synthesis of the literature is presented, leading to personal histories as a method of discovery. The Biographic Narrative Interpretive Method’s minimalist interview technique is put forth as the key data-gathering event. Reflecting teams, underpinned by hermeneutics or interpretive phenomenology, are used for the analyses. Data from in-depth, biographic interviews with two informal carers (a mother and her adult son) from a seven-member, three-generational family are presented. The study reveals that this family defines disability as a status that they share in common: disability demonstrates relationships and keeps the family together, but discourages mobility. It is suggested that often-unmet childhood needs propelled these particular individuals into demonstrating those needs as adults by assuming informal care relationships. The case is made that their biographies impact upon their management of health and enduring illnesses within caring roles. Further biographic research within the caring profession is recommended.

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Additional Titles
Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing

Key Information

Type of Reference
Jour
ISBN/ISSN
1351-0126, 1351-0126
Resource Database
British nursing index bni - exported on 8/7/2016
Publication Year
2006
Issue Number
2
Volume Number
13
Start Page
214-220
Language
English