Being a Parent after a Disaster: The New Normal after the 2009 Victorian Black Saturday Bushfires
AuthorKosta, L; Harms, L; Gibbs, L; Rose, D
Source TitleThe British Journal of Social Work
PublisherOxford University Press (OUP)
AffiliationMelbourne School of Population and Global Health
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsKosta, L., Harms, L., Gibbs, L. & Rose, D. (2021). Being a Parent after a Disaster: The New Normal after the 2009 Victorian Black Saturday Bushfires. British Journal of Social Work, 51 (5), pp.1759-1778. https://doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcab104.
Access StatusThis item is embargoed and will be available on 2023-07-01
Abstract This article explores parental experiences over nearly seven years that followed catastrophic Australian bushfires in 2009. Principles of pragmatism and the constructionist tradition guided the use of semi-structured interviews with parents (nineteen mothers and three fathers) and inductive thematic analysis to distil what participants said about the trauma, loss and disruption caused by the fires, and ways in which they responded as parents. Changes described in their parenting role and family life were themed as ‘losing normal’ which encompassed managing additional exposures, losing fun and living at their capacity. Parents then evinced the struggle of settling and seeking to regain a sense of normal. This theme highlighted tensions, pressures and expectations they faced (their own and external) in trying to get back to normal, along with extended recovery timeframes. Participants valued strategies to provide stability, familiarity and manage their own emotions. The analysis highlights the influence of the parental role on an experience of trauma, the range of losses and the extended experience of disaster recovery for parents. Insights for social work practice are discussed, including the potential to inform expectations of recovery timeframes and supporting parents and their families to reconstruct their sense of normal in their new, post-disaster context.
- Click on "Export Reference in RIS Format" and choose "open with... Endnote".
- Click on "Export Reference in RIS Format". Login to Refworks, go to References => Import References