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Mothering on the Margins: A Narrative Inquiry into the Experiences of Precariously Housed Women Negotiating Harm and Care.

  • Author / Creator
    Dewart, Georgia K
  • This paper-based doctoral dissertation explores the experiences of three women, who are precariously housed, and who disclosed substance use during their pregnancy or early post-partum period. Guided by narrative inquiry’s commitment to relational ethics and responsibilities, I formed close relationships with three participants - Nikki, Renate, and Marilynn. I developed relationships with each of the women, which allowed us to explore their complex and challenging experiences with care and harm reduction services. Through regular conversations and times spent alongside Nikki, Renate, and Marilynn during medical appointments, and day-to-day errands, our relationships grew. During this time, I took extensive field notes and tape-recorded some of our conversations. The development of interim research texts, named narrative accounts, were guided by these field texts and ongoing negotiations with Nikki, Renate, and Marilynn. In the final research texts, composed of three papers, I reflect on the substantive and methodological contributions of narrative inquiry in research and nursing care. I also return to the personal, practical, and social justifications that guided this research. This work serves to challenge practices that categorize or classify those who access health services, at the expense of relational care. Sharing the experiences of Nikki, Renate, Marilynn, and our relationships, encourages the recognition of substance use and transition into motherhood as complex, rich, heartfelt, and hopeful.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    2019-06
  • Type of Item
    Thesis
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
    https://doi.org/10.7939/r3-ftrx-eq46
  • License
    Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.