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J Korean Acad Psychiatr Ment Health Nurs > Volume 25(2); 2016 > Article
Journal of Korean Academy of psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing 2016;25(2):133-146.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.12934/jkpmhn.2016.25.2.133    Published online July 20, 2016.
Experiences of Caring for a Spouse with Schizophrenia.
Gong Ju Chai, Eun Sook Nam
1Department of Nursing, Catholic Sangji College, Andong, Korea.
2Department of Nursing, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon, Korea. belle09na@naver.com
Abstract
PURPOSE
The aimof this phenomenological study was to qualitatively classify the experience of spouses caring for patients with schizophrenia. METHODS: Data were gathered using 2 hour in-depth, unstructured interviews with nine spouses of patients with schizophrenia. The data collection period was 2012 to 2013. Colaizzi's phenomenological method was used to analyze the resulting data. RESULTS: Five clusters of themes were identified. These were termed according to the experiences described by the spouses, as: suffering fromfalling into the abyss of despair; deepening heartbreak, clouds of misery hanging over one's family; possibly of losing the bond between familymembers; getting over one's hurt and stepping forward to the future. Participants experienced many burdens while caring for their spouse, however, they showed the ability to overcome difficulties positively and actively. CONCLUSION: The results of this study indicate that the spouse of a patient with schizophrenia experiences multiple sources of distress, and suggests a process to overcoming them. Recommendations include helping nurses be aware of the sufferings of both the patient and the spouse and to plan and provide for psychological interventions, such as stressmanagement programs and informational support on social welfare programs.
Key Words: Schizophrenia; Spouses; Caring; Qualitative research


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