Table 3

Themes, sub-themes and categories

Theme

Sub-themes

Category/Spiritual

Category/Psychosocial


Personal experience of the meeting

The experience of speaking

experience of review (meaning/purpose) experience of being open (deepening of relationship which goes beyond social engagement)

topics covered/inhibitors to openness/experience of being open/value of speaking in group (communication, social well-being)


How they felt

perceived feelings/getting realistic (emotional wellbeing)


New understandings

of self/family members/family unit (deepening of relationship which goes beyond social engagement)

of self/family members/family unit (communication, social well-being)


Personal outcomes

Freedom to speak

said things would not have said/freer (deepening of relationship which goes beyond social engagement)

said things would not have said/freer (communication)


Personal changes

specific changes eg faith, closure past hurts & guilt (relationship to higher power, meaning)

Talking more openly with a child (communication)


Make a contribution

help research/other families/self/own family (finding meaning & purpose)


Observations of others' experience

Openness

conservative but loosened up/courage to be open/as open as they could be (for some deepening of relationship which goes beyond social engagement)

conservative but loosened up/courage to be open/as open as they could be (communication & social well-being)


Feelings

comfortable/emotional/painful (emotional well-being)


New understanding

they understand better/learnt a lot (for some deepening of relationship which goes beyond social engagement)

they understand better/learnt a lot (social well-being)


Other comment

definite benefit/initially sceptical (social well-being)


Observations of experience & out-comes for family unit

Impact on speaking together in future

reminded of the value of speaking more openly (for some deepening of relationship which goes beyond social engagement)

reminded of the value of this/broke the ice/sense of achievement/no change (social well-being)


Impact on relationships

new ways of being together/new awareness/understanding (for some deepening of relationship which goes beyond social engagement)

strengthened family bond/new ways of being together/new awareness/understanding/reunion (social well-being)


Impact on feelings

more comfortable together/overall felt better (emotional well-being)


Impact on grieving process

may make it easier/give a different focus (meaning)

may make it easier/give a different focus (emotional well-being)


Meeting facilitation

Experience of facilitation

how they felt about it/impact of facilitation (social & emotional well-being)


Qualities needed for facilitation

general qualities/handling problems/'outsider' (for some deepening of relationship which goes beyond social engagement)

general qualities/handling problems/'outsider' (social & emotional well-being)


How it could have been different

Who was present

Number/other family members/children (potential impact)

Number/other family members/children (potential impact)


More meetings

Yes/doubtful (potential impact)

Yes/doubtful (potential impact)


Meeting timing

Earlier/later/just right (potential impact)

Earlier/later/just right (potential impact)


Needs not met by meeting

Need to talk 1 on 1/things couldn't say at meeting (potential impact)

Need to talk 1 on 1/things couldn't say at meeting (potential impact)


Other meeting aspects

Place/style/hear more from others (potential impact)

Place/style/hear more from others (potential impact)


General applicability of the family meeting

Who would benefit

everyone/only in special circumstances/not for all (potential impact)

everyone/only in special circumstances/not for all (potential impact)


Promoting it

general comments/specific means (potential impact)

general comments/specific means (potential impact)


Tan et al. BMC Palliative Care 2011 10:7   doi:10.1186/1472-684X-10-7

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