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Exploring internal conversations to understand the experience of young adults transitioning out of care

Barratt, Caroline and Appleton, Peter and Pearson, Melanie (2020) 'Exploring internal conversations to understand the experience of young adults transitioning out of care.' Journal of Youth Studies, 23 (7). pp. 869-885. ISSN 1367-6261

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Margaret Archer’s model of reflexivity suggests that it is our internal conversations, those conversations we have within our own minds, that enable us to decide how we act in relation to the constraints and enablements of social structure to realise a meaningful life. We use the concept of internal conversations to explore the experience of six care leavers. In-depth interviews were carried out, using the interview structure proposed by Archer, to elicit discussion of internal conversations. The research had three related aims: explore the relevance of Archer’s model of reflexivity to care leavers; explore how they make sense of planning and the future; and consider how care leavers make sense of their family and social relationships. There was considerable diversity in internal conversations and in how useful they were perceived to be; We suggest that previous trauma may impact the reflexivity of care leavers and how they engage in planning. Eight themes are discussed including: planning; early trauma and future orientation; making sense of themselves and their past; and the complexity of social relationships. The plurality of attitudes to future planning is of relevance to how care leavers are supported, particularly to pathway or transition planning.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Care leavers, transitioning out of care, emerging adulthood, adolescence
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health
Faculty of Science and Health > Health and Social Care, School of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 24 Jul 2020 12:47
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2022 14:03

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