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Social Work Visions from Around the Globe by Anneli Pohjola, Pirkko-Liisa Ranhalon, Teppo Kroger, Anna Metten

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Parents as Advocates:Stories of Surplus Suffering When a Child Is Diagnosed and Treated for Cancer

Juanne N. Clarke, PhDPaula Fletcher, PhD

SUMMARY. Twenty-nine parents of children who had been diagnosed with cancer were interviewed through long and relatively unstructured interviews conducted via telephone by a mother whose own daughter once had cancer. Parents were asked to tell the story of their experiences during the time that they were ‘going through’ cancer. Parents usually began their narrative in the months, weeks, or days prior to the diagnosis. They spoke of various parts of the story. In this paper, the focus is on one topic that parents talked about a lot. We call this ‘problems with the system’ or ‘surplus suffering.’ Here parents ...

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