Date of Award

Summer 1981

Degree Type

Thesis - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Nursing

Abstract

Responses of spouses while caring for terminally ill mates in the home were identified and categorized from a review of literature as well as reflection upon previous clinical experiences. Categories include physical , interactional, intellectual and intrapsychic responses. Within these categories helplessness, physical complaints of tiredness and fatigue and a decrease in social interaction were responses common to all spouses. Age, sex, the status of existing family situations and the personal meaning of the event seemed to have an effect on the manner in which spouses responded. Family members were not always defined by spouses as a primary means of support.

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