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:: Planning for the future: Exploring the experiences of older carers of adult children with a learning disability ::
 | Post date: 2022/06/11 | 

Planning for the future: Exploring the experiences of older carers of adult children with a learning disability

Jane Deville, Helen Davies, Ros Kane, David Nelson and Paul Mansfield

Background: There are a significant number of adults with a learning disability who live with and are cared for by their parents. There is a pressing need for interventions to support older parent carers with their role and to plan for a time when they can no longer continue caring. This article reports on the experiences of older parent carers who have been in receipt of an intervention to support future planning, in a rural part of England, delivered to older carers of their adult children with learning disabilities.

Methods: Semi‐structured carer interviews (n = 12) were conducted and analysed thematically.

Results: Four themes were identified (a) emotional needs of carer, (b) future planning, (c) accessing other services and resources and (d) links to adult care services. Carers welcomed the flexibility of the intervention and its focus on support for them, relieving their sense of isolation.

Conclusions: The research highlights the unmet needs of older family carers and shows the value of tailored support from a carer perspective. The findings have im- plications for national social care provision delivered to carers of adult children with learning disabilities in rural areas.

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:: Selected article: ::
 | Post date: 2022/01/29 | 
Penelope M. Kearney RN DipAppSci BHlthSci MNursing(Hons) MCN MRCNA, Tim Griffin PhD

Between joy and sorrow: being a parent of a child with developmental disability Aim. This study explored the experiences of parents who have children with significant developmental disability. Background. Prevailing societal and professional assumptions of parental crisis and maladjustment in response to the ‘tragedy’ of having a disabled child did not accord with the authors’ practice experience. Whilst parents confronted numerous difficulties, most of them appeared to manage with optimism and remarkable resourcefulness. Research design. The study, using an interpretive methodology informed by phenomenology, intensively explored the experiences of six parents of children with significant developmental disability. Findings. Although they experienced much anguish and sorrow, the parents also spoke of hope, love, strength and joy. Interpretation of the parents’ experiences revealed the themes of ‘joy and sorrow’, ‘hope and no hope’ and ‘defiance and despair’, mediated by ‘the tensions’. Conclusions. This phenomenological interpretation provides insight and understanding into the parents’ experiences and has implications for practice, education and research in nursing.
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:: Bitter experiences of elderly parents of children with intellectual disabilities: A phenomenological study ::
 | Post date: 2022/01/13 | 

Background: It is predicted that over the next 30 years, there will be a significant increase in the number of elderly parents who care for their children with intellectual disability. This paper is part of a larger qualitative study which investigated the unpleasant experiences of these parents.

Materials and Methods: A phenomenological approach was adopted and data were collected through unstructured in‑depth interviews with elderly parents of children with intellectual disability. The data were analyzed using Colaizzi’s seven‑step method.

Results: “Bitterness” is one of the four emergent themes extracted in this study which has five theme clusters: inappropriate behavior toward the child in the society, the society’s failure to support the child with intellectual disability, sorrows experienced by parents, the child’s problems, and barriers in the care of the child with intellectual disability. One significant barrier in the last theme cluster is limitations due to aging.

Conclusions: The findings of this study suggest that the elderly parents of children with intellectual disability experience many sorrows and unpleasant feelings, but they mostly consider the social factors as the cause of problems and not the presence of the child. The results also indicate that older parents cannot look after the child as before in their old age; so, future well‑designed studies are required for identification of the process of supporting them.

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