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Positive Experiences in Caregivers: An Exploratory Case Series

  • Emma Bacon (a1), Derek L. Milne (a2), Alia I. Sheikh (a2) and Mark H. Freeston (a2)

Background: Recent research into positive experiences in caregivers has begun to redress the traditional focus on negative aspects of caregiving experiences. Method: This exploratory study used a cognitive-behavioural approach – namely, the transactional stress model (Lazarus and Folkman, 1984) – to investigate associations between appraisals, coping, and gains over a 6-week period in a small sample (N = 4; case series) design involving stroke caregivers. Analysis involved visual inspection of graphs, supported by descriptive statistics, and co-variation analysis. Results: Participants reported high levels of positive experiences, and these increased over the study period, a previously unreported trend. The study also found individual differences in the interactions between appraisal, coping, and caregiving gain variables, findings explained by the transactional stress model. Conclusions: Implications for clinical practice and future research are addressed.

Corresponding author
Reprint requests to Alia Sheikh, Department of Clinical Psychology, Ridley Building, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 7RU, UK. E-mail:
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