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Fathimath Rifshana

Doctor of Clinical Psychology, (Psychology)
Study Completed: 2017
College of Humanities & Social Sciences


Thesis Title
The Lived Experience of Parents Caring for a Child with Type 1 Diabetes

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Parents of children with Type 1 diabetes can experience significant stress from the daily demands of this illness, underlined by strong imperatives to achieve good glycaemic control. Ms Rifshana explored the everyday lived experience of parenting a child with Type 1 diabetes. Seventeen parents from three geographical areas in New Zealand were interviewed. The qualitative analysis highlighted important elements of their caregiving experience. Worry and uncertainty characterised the transition following the diagnosis, where parents learnt to manage the new and emerging needs of their child. Parents made comparisons with other chronic conditions as a way of coping with the 'constant-ness' and unpredictability of the illness. The daily 'doing' of diabetes re-conceptualised parental resilience in terms of action rather than as a trait or skill. Understanding these experiences can help normalise common feelings described by parents and improve awareness of their role in parenting a child with Type 1 diabetes.

Associate Professor Mary Breheny
Associate Professor Joanne Taylor
Dr Kirsty Ross