Johnson, N and Pascal, JW (2016) Relational distressed and maternal absence: Young women's lived experience of familial breast cancer. Illness, Crisis and Loss, 26 (3). pp. 200-222. ISSN 1054-1373

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Young women growing up within the context of familial breast cancer are faced with significant psychosocial challenges. The most profound of these are the temporary absence, and permanent loss, of their mothers. Eighteen young women (aged 18–34) from rural Victoria (Australia), with family histories of breast cancer, were interviewed for this study. The data were analyzed using hermeneutic Heideggerian phenomenology to explore their lived experiences. Our findings reveal the long term and pervasive consequences of relational distress associated with the temporary and permanent loss of mothers. This distress is experienced through disruptions to developmental attachment and embodied and biographical identity. We highlight how familial breast cancer extends beyond genetic inheritance to encompass the relational distress of loss and grief. We conclude by highlighting the importance of considering the ways in which temporality, self-identity, and daughters' ways of seeing themselves are significantly altered by their mothers' cancer experience.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This work is made available online in accordance with the publisher policies Copyright © 2016 by SAGE Publications
Uncontrolled Keywords: cancer; relational distress; maternal absence; identity; phenomenology
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Social Science and Public Policy
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 01 Dec 2016 12:28
Last Modified: 10 Apr 2019 09:37

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