The experiences of young carers: A meta-synthesis of qualitative findings

Rose, Helena and Cohen, Keren. 2010. The experiences of young carers: A meta-synthesis of qualitative findings. Journal of Youth Studies, 13, pp. 473-487. ISSN 1367-6261 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

The aim of this meta-synthesis was to explore young carers’ accounts of caring for a family member with an illness, difficulty or disability, and to promote a phenomenological understanding of their experiences. A meta-ethnographic method of meta-synthesis was adopted, utilising the process of reciprocal translation to synthesise 11 qualitative studies. The synthesis yielded four main concepts: (1) becoming a caring person; (2) the adult child _ the marks of being different; (3) who is a carer? _ others’ expectations and stigmatisation; and (4) keeping caring as a secret _ protecting the caring role and identity. The synthesis of translation generated the higher-order concept of ‘integrating caring into an emerging identity’. This concept considers the experiences of young carers as a process of identity formation in the face of persistent stressful experiences from both within and outside the caring role.

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Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Social, Therapeutic & Community Engagement (STaCS)



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Date Deposited:

23 May 2011 10:14

Last Modified:

10 Jul 2017 08:28

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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