Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Subjective Experience of Children in the Reunification Process
by Graham, Merrill, Ph.D., Institute for Clinical Social Work (Chicago), 2019, 153; 13895748
Abstract (Summary)

This phenomenological qualitative study offers an in-depth exploration of the subjective experience of five children who were participating in the reunification process. This study presents new insight into the experiences of children in reunification, including their perceptions of the ability of a reunifying parent to adequately meet children’s mirroring and idealizing self-object needs. By offering a psychodynamic understanding of the children’s experience, this study deepens the understanding of professionals who facilitate reunification services.

This study returned four findings:

1. Participants perceived a loss of actual and desired connection to others . . .

2. Participants perceived a loss of control within their relationships. In negotiating parental separation they experienced splitting and a disrupted sense of agency...

3. Participants perceived that they were not heard, and experienced ego depletion and psychological pain...

4. Participants perceived a lack of positive parental affect and sensitivity, and experienced shortages in mirroring and idealizing selfobject needs...

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Tsioles, Denise
Commitee: Lampe, James, Goldberg, Constance, Piotrowski, Michelle, Blumhardt, Kerstin
School: Institute for Clinical Social Work (Chicago)
Department: Clinical Social Work
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: DAI-A 82/1(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Social work
Keywords: Reunification, Children
Publication Number: 13895748
ISBN: 9798662416604
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