DOI of the published article https://doi.org/10.1590/1413-81232020261.30402020
SUBJECTIVE LIFE EXPERIENCES OF FAMILY CAREGIVERS OF DEPENDENT OLDER ADULTS
Keywords:Family caregivers, Dependent older adult, Care, Subjectivity
This study aimed to understand the subjective meanings attributed to home care by family caregivers of dependent older adults through a multicenter qualitative investigation that gathered 84 in-depth interviews with family caregivers from eight Brazilian locations. The hermeneutic-dialectic, theoretical, methodological framework was employed. The following categories emerged from the analysis: 1. Movements inhibiting emotions and feelings; 2. Presence of processes of symbiosis and emotional dependence in the older adult-relative relationship; 3. Contentment in caring for the dependent older adult; and 4. Giving up current and future life projects. The results reveal life experiences marked by symbiotic processes, emotional dependence, and psychic stress. Dependence causes suffering and feelings of despair, powerlessness, impatience, but also solidarity and empathy. Withdrawal from the job market, social depreciation of family caregiver’s activity, social isolation, neglected self-care, and family conflicts impact caregivers’ subjectivity. The elaboration of public policies must consider the social-affective life experiences of family caregivers of dependent older adults in order to include the care of those providing care.
Copyright (c) 2020 Denise Machado Duran Gutierrez, Girliani Silva de Sousa, Ana Elisa Bastos Figueiredo, Maria de Nazaré Souza Ribeiro, Cleisiane Xavier Diniz, Guiomar Alegria Souza Silva Nobre
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.