Grief trajectories among bereaved parents after the 2011 Utøya terror attack: A qualitative analysis
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionDeath Studies. 2022. 10.1080/07481187.2022.2135045
This study took a qualitative approach to explore terror-bereaved parents’ long-term experiences with grief. Data were drawn from a larger, longitudinal study, and interviews with 10 bereaved parents were selected based on their reported change in scores on Inventory of Complicated Grief (ICG) over a period of 6.5 years, including the five parents with the largest change (group 1) and the five parents with the least change (group 2). Reflexive thematic analysis of the interview transcripts resulted in four main themes: “I felt completely lost and helpless, like I was stuck in a whirlwind” and “I have been fighting to get back to my everyday life”, which both groups contributed to. Participants in group 1 contributed to the theme “I have found a way to a new life,” while participants in group 2 contributed to the theme “I cannot seem to find a way to a new life.” Findings suggest that sense of control, acceptance, and social support enhanced experienced coping following terror-related bereavement, while comorbid mental health problems, difficulties with acceptance, and repetitive thoughts about the death was experienced as contributing to long-term struggles following terror-related bereavement.