Author(s): Berglund MM
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Abstract A long-term illness is an occurrence that changes one's life and generates a need to learn how to live with it. This article is based on an empirical study of interviews on people living with different long-term illnesses. The results have shown that the learning process is a complex phenomenon interwoven with life as a whole. The essential meaning of learning to live with long-term illness concerns a movement toward a change of understanding of access to the world. In this movement, in which everyday lives as well as relationships with oneself and others are affected, a continual renegotiation is needed. Texts from existential/lifeworld philosopher, Heidegger and Gadamer, have been used to get a greater understanding of the empirical results. These texts have been analysed with particular focus on learning turning points and the importance of reflection. The results are highlighted under the following themes: Pursuit of balance-the aim of learning, The tense grip-the resistance to learning, To live more really-the possibilities of the learning, Distancing-the how of the learning, and The tense of the learning-the whole of the learning. In those learning turning points are present. Knowledge from this study has been used to make a didactic model designed to give caregivers a tool to support patients' learning. The didactic model is called: The challenge to take charge of life with a long-term illness.
This article was published in Int J Qual Stud Health Well-being
and referenced in Journal of Gerontology & Geriatric Research