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I don't know whether you should talk to them about it. Talking about memory difficulties in couples where one partner has early-stage dementia

Griggs, Jenny; (2003) I don't know whether you should talk to them about it. Talking about memory difficulties in couples where one partner has early-stage dementia. Doctoral thesis (D.Clin.Psy), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

This exploratory qualitative study was designed to investigate the way that couples talk to each other when one partner has early-stage dementia. It specifically set out to explore whether there was evidence of Kitwood's positive and negative elements of interaction in conversations between couples, as utilised in Dementia Care Mapping, what concerns couples raise with one another with regards to memory difficulties, and whether couples find it helpful to discuss their concerns. Seven couples participated in this study. They were asked to hold a conversation about any concerns they had regarding the memory difficulties experienced by one of them. Following this conversation each member was interviewed separately to explore their experience of this conversation, and whether they found it generally helpful to discuss concerns with their spouse. The data were analysed using content analysis and Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Evidence of some of Kitwood's negative and positive elements were found throughout the conversations though differing patterns of elements were shown between different couples, and between the people with dementia and their spouses. During the conversations there was great variation in the amount that the couples focused on the memory difficulties and their concerns, with some couples appearing to avoid this topic to a greater or lesser extent. Through the conversations and the interviews it was found that the majority of the couples involved in this study did not discuss their concerns about dementia with one another, and a number of different reasons were given for this. The findings are discussed in relation to the existing literature, and a speculative model is proposed linking the observations with social constructionist theories in relation to dementia. Clinical implications and methodological limitations of the study are considered.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: D.Clin.Psy
Title: I don't know whether you should talk to them about it. Talking about memory difficulties in couples where one partner has early-stage dementia
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Psychology; Couples; Dementia
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10099400
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