Expressions of Sense of Self Among Individuals With Alzheimer's Disease
2016 (English)In: Research and Theory for Nursing Practice, ISSN 1541-6577, E-ISSN 1945-7286, Vol. 30, no 2, 161-175 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Recent research has challenged the previously held view that people with Alzheimer's disease (AD) lack a sense of self, with several studies demonstrating that the sense of self is partially preserved, even in late stages of AD. The aim of this study was to examine how people with AD express their sense of self (Self 1-3) using the social constructionist theory of selfhood described by Harre (1998). Personal interviews were analyzed deductively. The participants narrated fragments of their life stories and expressed the fear of becoming a burden to family members and of nursing home placement. They expressed Self 1 (personal singularity or personal identity) without any problems, whereas their Self 2 (self-concept) attributes had undergone changes that they had learned to live with. The participants expressed surprisingly few problems with their narratives of Self 3 (social personae), that is, their accounts of interactions with other people. They reported being received positively when they were open about their diagnosis. These results provide further nuances that broaden our understanding of the process of preserving the sense of self, that is, simultaneously being the same and a different person.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 30, no 2, 161-175 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-126548DOI: 10.1891/1541-65220.127.116.11ISI: 000383125900006PubMedID: 27333635OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-126548DiVA: diva2:1033799