Burmese Refugee Women in Resettlement: Narratives of Strength, Resilience, and Posttraumatic Growth
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Though there is research to suggest a robust association between exposure to traumatic events and negative mental health outcomes (Fazel, Wheeler, & Danesh, 2005), refugees, amongst other individuals, demonstrate remarkable resilience and ability to cope with adverse stressors (Schweitzer, Greenslade, & Kagee, 2007)—some even report positive psychological changes as a result of their struggle with highly challenging life circumstances (Tedeschi & Calhoun, 2004b; Hussain & Bhushan, 2013). The goal of this qualitative study was to examine the strengths, adaptive capacity, and posttraumatic growth experiences of a community of female Burmese refugees resettled in a Midwestern city of the United States. Based on data gathered from eleven participants, Consensual Qualitative Research (CQR) analysis yielded a thematic overview of four domains: (a) pre-resettlement experiences; (b) post-resettlement experiences; (c) coping and resilience; and (d) experiences of posttraumatic growth. The results provided contextual evidence to the pre-resettlement and post-resettlement stressors experienced by Burmese refugee women in resettlement. Findings also highlighted the strengths, protective factors, and resources of Burmese refugee women, whose narratives of positive growth and change seemed to co-exist with memories and experiences of trauma, suffering, and hardship. Implications for research and clinical practice as well as future directions are discussed.
Table of Contents
Introduction -- Manuscript -- Introduction -- Literature review -- Purpose of the present study -- Method -- Results -- Discussion -- Appendix A. Demographic Questionnaire -- Appendix B. Consent for Participation in Research Study -- Appendix C. Semi Structured Interview Questions