The Forgotten Parent: an exploration of the lived experience of fathers during the early childhood of their first-born

Chacin Fuenmayor, Margarita Del Valle (2022) The Forgotten Parent: an exploration of the lived experience of fathers during the early childhood of their first-born. DPsych thesis, Middlesex University / Metanoia Institute. [Thesis]

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In today's Western society, fathers have a different and more active role than their fathers. While there has been a great deal of research on the mother's emotions, fatherhood's consequences have received less attention in the literature. This study explores the way fathers think about their experience of being a first-time father of a child during early childhood.

An exploratory qualitative study was conducted using semi-structured interviews. The data was analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA), as the study focused on understanding fathers' meaning and experiences. Seven fathers were recruited using snowballing sampling. The mean age of participants was 34 years (range=32 to 41 years); and the mean age of their children was 2.5 years (range=1 to 4 years).

Four superordinated themes were revealed: Development of contemporary fatherhood; Fatherhood Challenges; Meaning in Life; and Father in Action. The findings expand on our understanding of fathers' experiences, and suggest fathers face a development between the role of their own father in comparison with their own role. This leads contemporary fathers to face many challenges, needing them to adapt their meaning in life to family necessities, and to be active in the upbringing of their children. This research serves to grow in the knowledge and awareness of how fatherhood has changed over the years and provides tools to offer fathers psychotherapeutic support.

Item Type: Thesis (DPsych)
Sustainable Development Goals:
Keywords (uncontrolled): fatherhood, IPA, lived experience, first-born
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology
B. > Theses
C. Collaborative Partners > Metanoia Institute
Item ID: 37144
Depositing User: Lisa Blanshard
Date Deposited: 06 Jan 2023 13:10
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2023 13:45

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