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The Experience of Living with a Foster Sibling, as Described by the Birth Children of Foster Carers: A Thematic Analysis of the Literature

Thompson, H and McPherson, S (2011) 'The Experience of Living with a Foster Sibling, as Described by the Birth Children of Foster Carers: A Thematic Analysis of the Literature.' Adoption and Fostering, 35 (2). 49 - 60. ISSN 0308-5759

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Abstract

The relationship between foster children and carers' own offspring has been investigated in many studies within foster care. However, while general patterns and outcomes have been established, the explanations underlying this relationship are more likely to be found in the common themes of smaller studies based on psychological theories published in academic and professional journals. This review by Hayley Thompson and Susan McPherson examines 14 published articles describing 12 different research studies, all exploring the experience of living with foster siblings, as described by the birth children of foster carers. These 12 studies include primarily qualitative evidence, although four also use forced choice and open response questionnaires. Taken together, the studies reviewed reflect the experiences of 1,102 children, aged between three and 32 years. They discuss the positive gains of fostering, the experience of loss, the conflict experienced, the transitions made and ways in which children manage the foster sibling relationship. These findings are discussed in relation to psychological theories, and proposals for future research and clinical practice are outlined. Conclusions are also drawn about the contribution of small-scale studies published in journals in disseminating research findings about fostered children.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Women
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Health and Social Care, School of
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 16 Jan 2012 21:55
Last Modified: 03 Apr 2021 17:15
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/2091

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