“Something was wrong”: A narrative inquiry of becoming a father of a child with an intellectual disability in Ireland.

Lynne Marsh, Patricia Leahy-Warren, Eileen Savage

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background
In recent years, there has been a growth of research on men’s experiences of becoming fathers, most of which relates to a typically developing child without intellectual disabilities. While some studies have specifically explored the experiences of becoming a father of a child with an intellectual disability, there are few studies from an Irish context.

Aim
The aim of this study was to present Irish fathers’ narratives within the context of leading up to the diagnosis and the actual diagnosis of a child’s intellectual disability.

Method
A qualitative narrative inquiry design was used with ten fathers aged 31–48 years through semi‐structured interviews.

Results
This study is part of a larger study focusing on becoming a father of a child with an intellectual disability in Ireland. The findings related to finding out “something was wrong” with the child are presented.

Conclusion
Fathers are emotionally affected by the diagnosis of a child’s intellectual disability. Therefore, healthcare professionals need to be cognisant of the emotional upheaval that such a diagnosis can have on fathers and be sensitive to their needs in supporting them through this process.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
JournalBritish Journal of Learning Disabilities
Early online date18 May 2018
DOIs
Publication statusEarly online date - 18 May 2018

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