Facing inadequacy and being good enough: psychiatric care providers' narratives about experiencing and coping with troubled conscience
2009 (English)In: Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, ISSN 1351-0126, E-ISSN 1365-2850, Vol. 16, no 3, 242-247 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
The aim of this study is to illuminate the meaning of encounters with a troubled conscience among psychiatric therapists. Psychiatric care involves ethical dilemmas which may affect conscience. Conscience relates to keeping or losing a sense of personal integrity when making judgments about one's actions. Ten psychiatric therapists were interviewed in June 2006. The interviews were tape-recorded, transcribed verbatim and interpreted using a phenomenological-hermeneutic method. Two themes 'Facing inadequacy' and 'Struggling to view oneself as being 'good enough'' are presented. In the therapists interviewed, awareness of their use of power, a sense of powerlessness and a sense of blame gave rise to feelings of betrayals and shameful inadequacy. By sharing their inadequacy with co-workers, they managed to endure the sense of their inadequacy which otherwise would have threatened to paralyse them. Finding consolation in sharing wearing feelings, becoming realistic and attesting their worthiness, they reached reconciliation and found confirmation of being good enough. The findings are interpreted in light of Lögstrup's ethics of trust, according to which conscience alerts us to silent but radical ethical demand and the risk of self-deception.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. Vol. 16, no 3, 242-247 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-71280DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2850.2008.01343.xPubMedID: 19291152OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-71280DiVA: diva2:623069