Looking at the world through a frosted window: experiences of loneliness among people with mental ill-health
2014 (English)In: Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, ISSN 1351-0126, E-ISSN 1365-2850, Vol. 21, no 2, 114-120 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Mental ill-health is reported to be of major concern in public health. Persons suffering from mental ill-health are a vulnerable group, and loneliness influences the perception of physical, social, and emotional well-being. However, there are few studies exploring lived experiences of loneliness among people with mental ill-health. This qualitative study aimed to illuminate experiences of loneliness among people with mental ill-health. Five individual, informal conversational interviews were performed and subjected to qualitative content analysis. The main findings showed that experiences of loneliness could be metaphorically described as looking at the world through a frosted window. The experiences of loneliness were multifaceted and altering as well as emotionally and socially excluding. The findings are discussed in relation to Tillich dimensions of loneliness: loneliness as a painful dimension of being alone, and solitude as the enriching dimension of being alone. People suffering from mental ill-health carry a twofolded stigma. They feel socially undesirable because of their mental ill-health, and the social perceptions of lonely people are generally unfavourable. We believe that mental health nurses can support the developing and creative dimension of loneliness through a confirming approach, where people with mental ill-health feel seen, heard, and respected as human beings.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
John Wiley & Sons, 2014. Vol. 21, no 2, 114-120 p.
community-based psychiatry, emotional and social exclusion, experiences of loneliness, mental ill-health, qualitative content analysis
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-86291DOI: 10.1111/jpm.12053ISI: 000330798000003OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-86291DiVA: diva2:698374