The Role of Parent/Caregiver with Children Affected by Rare Diseases: Navigating between Love and Fear
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In this paper, we propose a vision of the role of parent/caregiver with children affected by a rare disease. This vision is rooted in data obtained from our own research; however, our analysis and interpretation of this data have been subsequently checked against existing theoretical models. The research aims to explore how parents who look after children with a rare disease experience their role as caregivers and how they assimilate their role identity in this task. Semi-structured interviews were performed with parents of 10 children, and a qualitative data analysis was conducted using grounded theory. We have identified ten main categories using a grounded theory approach: stress, disorientation, insecurity, isolation, faith, trust, attention, communication with professionals, private proactivity and public proactivity. Our results also show that when parents perceive a greater burden due to looking after a child with a rare disease, the result is a change in the usual parental role...