Relationships between demented elderly people and their families: a follow-up study of caregivers who had previously reported abuse when caring for their spouses and parents

Authors

  • Margareta Grafstrom RNT,

    Corresponding author
    1. Doctoral Student, Stockholm Gerontology Research Centre, and Department of Geriatric Medicine, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm
      Margarita Grafström Doctoral Student, Stockholm Gerontology Research Centre, Dalagatan 9–11, 113 82 Stockholm, Swedan
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  • Astrid Norberg RN PhD,

    1. Professor, Department of Advanced Nursing, University of Umeá, Umeá
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  • Bo Hagberg PhD

    1. Professor, Gerontology Research Centre, and Department of Psychology, University of Lund, Lund, Sweden
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Margarita Grafström Doctoral Student, Stockholm Gerontology Research Centre, Dalagatan 9–11, 113 82 Stockholm, Swedan

Abstract

The aim of the study was to elucidate how relationships develop over time in abusive families Family members of demented elderly people who previously reported abuse in the care of the elderly relatives are interviewed in a follow-up study In this current study the families did not mention any abusive behaviour They narrated their feelings toward their care recipient in the following main categories mothering, grieving, feeling guilty, distancing and objectifying When the family members expressed mothering thoughts, there were no expressions of guilt, objectifying or distancing, and the prior relationship was narrated as good The families who talked about the demented person at a distance or by objectifying did not express feelings of mothering or grief for the relative

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