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Närvarandets frånvaro: En litteraturöversikt över socialarbetares bemötande av barn vars förälder är döende eller har dött
Malmö University, Faculty of Health and Society (HS).
Malmö University, Faculty of Health and Society (HS).
2024 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
The absence of presence : A literature review of social workers´support towards children with a dying or dead parent (English)
Abstract [en]

For those who work with adult patients that are at the end of their life, the best interest of the patient’s child still needs to be taken into consideration. The professional, together with the patient and the healthy parent, all play key roles in the child’s socialization process. Nevertheless professionals, social workers and parents still seem to harbor misconceptions regarding children’s resilience, ability and needs regarding communication about death. Moreover, social work performed in a hospital context can often be seen as ambiguous. The tasks often overlap other medical professionals’ and in addition, the social worker is often left to figure out the child’s emotional needs alone. This study therefore aims to develop an understanding of how social workers, who work with adult patients in a hospital context, can be of emotional support to their patient’s child dependants. The ways in which parents communicate about death to their children is further investigated, along with how this communication influences children’s understanding of death. By conducting a scoping review, previous research regarding the ways in which child dependants are approached and supported by both social workers and other medical professionals is presented and analyzed. Socialization theory and developmental ecology are applied to highlight the negative impact a lack of professional support can have on child dependants and their grief. Our findings show that it’s not uncommon that social workers and other medical staff forget to accommodate the patient’s child dependants, or even actively try to avoid them. There seem to be a common belief among these professionals that they don’t have enough knowledge or experience regarding communicating with children, and that support and guidance for this target group thus is beyond their territory. Because of this, the responsibility for the child is often transferred to other authorities thought to be better suited in supporting them. Ultimately, our results concludes that children aren’t just dependent on their parents for social support in times of crisis, but on the professionals they meet during those times as well.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2024. , p. 61
Keywords [en]
Social workers, hospital staff, children, parents, death, communication
Keywords [sv]
Socialarbetare, sjukvårdspersonal, barn, föräldrar, döden, kommunikation
National Category
Social Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-68342OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mau-68342DiVA, id: diva2:1865958
Educational program
HS Socionomutbildning
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2024-06-11 Created: 2024-06-05 Last updated: 2024-06-11Bibliographically approved

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Krafft, MatildaJönsson, Pim
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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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  • de-DE
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  • en-US
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  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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  • asciidoc
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