You Matter: Retrospectively Exploring the Needs of Adolescents who had a Sibling with Cancer




Stonebridge, Genevieve Grace Shireen

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Previous research has started the discussion about the impact of unmet needs on the psychosocial adjustment of well-siblings of children and youth diagnosed with cancer. The purpose of this qualitative study was to retrospectively explore the needs of adolescents who had a brother or sister, who was diagnosed with, treated for and who lived through cancer. The findings and knowledge mobilization project from this study will extend the literature and will also bring information to counsellors, social workers, doctors, nurses, cancer support agencies, parents, family members, friends, teachers, and—importantly—to well-siblings themselves. Narrative data were collected from 7 adult sisters who reflected on their adolescent-aged experience of being the well-sibling of a sister (n=4) or brother (n=3) who was diagnosed with and treated for cancer. Data were analyzed using thematic analysis and 7 need-based themes identified from the data are reported. Further research is recommended, and implications from the present study are discussed.



adolescent siblings, well-siblings, childhood cancer survivors, brothers and sisters, family