Inclusiveness: a mental health strategy for preventing future mental health problems among adolescents orphaned by AIDS

SOURCE: Journal of Psychiatirc and Mental Health Nursing
OUTPUT TYPE: Journal Article
PUBLICATION YEAR: 2011
TITLE AUTHOR(S): G.Thupayagale-Tshweneagae, Z.Mokomane
KEYWORDS: ADOLESCENTS, HIV/AIDS, MENTAL HEALTH, ORPHANS
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 7063

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Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to raise an argument that inclusiveness will lessen the pain of losing a parent among adolescents orphaned by AIDS and as a result, prevent future mental health problems that may occur because of inappropriate grieving and maladaptive coping strategies. Participation of adolescents orphaned by AIDS in decisions pertaining to their parents' illnesses and funeral arrangements, for example, may shorten the grieving process and allow for closure. The paper draws data from focus group discussions that were held with 15 adolescents orphaned by AIDS in urban South Africa. The focus group discussions that were structured around four themes: grieving patterns; coping strategies; experience with loss; and expectations. The results of the study demonstrate inclusiveness as an overarching factor in the healing process. The concept is thus a strong recommendation for mental health practice and further study.