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29.10.2019 | Original Article

“Children are going on a Different Path”: Youth Identity from the Bangladeshi Immigrant Parents’ Perspective

Zeitschrift:
International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction
Autoren:
Farah Islam, Anjum Sultana, Syeda Qasim, Mari Kozak, Hala Tamim, Nazilla Khanlou
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Abstract

The objective of this study was to describe youth identity from the parents’ perspective focusing on the impact of migration on identity formation for both parents and children. The semi-structured interview guide was developed using an intersectional lens (Crenshaw 1989). Interviews with Bangladeshi immigrants (n = 18) living in Toronto, Canada, were analyzed using Braun and Clarke’s (Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3(2), 77–101, 2006) guide on thematic analysis and a systems framework (Khanlou et al. 2018). Parents described youth identity as a time of conflict fraught with turmoil, confusion, loneliness, and dual identity. Parents felt their children were on a divergent path from themselves in terms of identity and often felt the changes in their children as a result of acculturation were difficult to comprehend. Their identity as a “parent” took precedence over all other roles in life, particularly for mothers. Parents and children experienced changes in their identity at the macro-, meso-, micro-, and individual levels. Parenting support programs and resources are particularly needed for families with adolescent children to help mitigate conflict within the home and bridge understanding between parents and children as identities shift and transition through the migration and resettlement process.

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