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12.01.2021 | Original Article

Spouse caregivers’ attributed gains from a skill-based counseling program

Zeitschrift:
Supportive Care in Cancer
Autoren:
Ellen H. Zahlis, Frances Marcus Lewis
Wichtige Hinweise

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Abstract

Objective

To describe spouse caregivers’ perceived gains in their own words from participating in a fully manualized 5-session educational counseling program whose goals were to enhance their self-care and skills to interpersonally support their wife with breast cancer.

Methods

Interviews from 81 spouses obtained 7 months after exiting from a fully manualized educational counseling program, Helping Her Heal, were content analyzed using inductive coding methods adapted from grounded theory. Trustworthiness of study results was protected by coding to consensus, formal peer debriefing, and maintaining an audit trail.

Results

Analysis yielded 3 conceptual domains: Giving Me Structure; Adding Skills to Help Her and Us; and Gaining Insights into Myself and My Wife, all of which reflected practical things on which spouses could take action and ways they could take care of themselves, support their wife, and from which they gained insight into their own and their wife’s response to the breast cancer.

Conclusions

Findings suggest that short-term, fully manualized counseling programs can provide opportunities and practical ways spouse caregivers are able to gain interpersonal communication, self-care skills, and personal insights. This scripted model of counseling is a way in which to deliver educational counseling with self-reported benefits, even though the program is fully scripted and not uniquely fashioned for each caregiver’s unique experience.

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