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ERIC Number: EJ1178150
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018-Jun
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1354-4187
Exploring the Range of Emotional Response Experienced When Parenting a Child with an Intellectual Disability: The Role of Dual Process
Sheehan, Philomena; Guerin, Suzanne
British Journal of Learning Disabilities, v46 n2 p109-117 Jun 2018
Background: This study aimed to explore the range of emotions experienced by parents in the early years of managing their child's disability, to assess the relevance of the Dual Process Model in understanding these emotions within an adjustment process and to identify the types of support and information perceived by parents as helpful during this time. Materials and Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with parents of children (5-7 years) who had attended early intervention services. Eleven parents participated, six of children with Down syndrome and five of children with complex needs. Interviews were transcribed, and a thematic analysis undertaken. Results: Parents report experiencing a wide range of emotions, which were described as particularly intense in the early months following diagnosis. There was some ambivalence in relation to discussing emotions with professionals. The timing of the provision of information on emotions and the nature of the delivery of this information were considered crucial by parents in determining it as helpful or unhelpful to them. Reflecting the Dual Process Model, while a loss orientation was evident in descriptions of the early years, there was evidence of a restoration orientation. Conclusions: Those delivering services must consider the delicate balance of maintaining awareness that intense emotions can be experienced during this adjustment process and being available when required, while respecting the privacy that many wish to preserve during the early years. One issue for professionals to address is how best to provide the necessary emotional support, mindfully and with respect for boundaries.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A