Sacrificing the personal to the professional: community mental health nurses

De Montfort University Open Research Archive

Show simple item record Brown, Brian J. Crawford, Paul Majomi, Pamela 2009-03-12T16:11:56Z 2009-03-12T16:11:56Z 2003-06-01
dc.identifier.citation Brown, B. J., Crawford, P., Majomi, P. (2003) Experience before and throughout the nursing career: Sacrificing the personal to the professional: community mental health nurses. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 42 (5), pp. 527-538. en
dc.identifier.issn 1365-2648
dc.description The definitive version is available at
dc.description.abstract The study of stress in mental health nurses has almost always focused on factors intrinsic to their job roles and has neglected the interaction between work and home roles, which may also be a source of stress. Moreover, role theory has not provided an adequate account of either personal or occupational change, especially when this results from the experience of stress. Methods. Twenty community mental health nurses agreed to participate in semistructured interviews about the stresses they experienced at work and at home. A grounded theory analysis disclosed the centrality of conflicts between work and home roles in participants' accounts and this provided the focus for subsequent detailed readings of the interview transcripts. Findings. Participants described how difficult and often demanding family situations were integrated with professional careers in a climate of rapid organizational change in the health service. As well as being an ongoing source of strain, these competing role demands were often described as leading to sudden changes for individual workers, such as periods of illness or re-evaluation of their work role. To assist in making sense of this process, the term ˜punctuated equilibria" was adopted to illuminate the build-up of tension between work and domestic lives, which was described by some workers as leading to a sudden reformulation of their relationship to their work roles and employing organizations. Conclusions and limitations. The study was small-scale and relied on retrospective self-reports. Nevertheless, it emphasized the importance of considering all the roles that individuals play and highlights the possibility that, even when staff are apparently coping with their roles at work and home, difficulties may be building up which could lead to a sudden period of absenteeism or disillusionment.
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher Blackwell en
dc.subject RAE 2008 en
dc.subject UoA 11 Nursing and Midwifery en
dc.subject community mental health nurses
dc.subject stress
dc.subject roles
dc.subject home-work conflict
dc.title Sacrificing the personal to the professional: community mental health nurses en
dc.type Article en
dc.researchgroup Participation & Social Justice
dc.researchgroup Psychology
dc.researchgroup Health Policy
dc.researchgroup Health Policy Research Unit

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