Please have a look through our latest news and events from the Centre for Critical Research in Nursing and Midwifery.
For more detail and the most up-to-date information, please visit the CCRNM blog.
Helen Allan presented to the Scholars at Work series in the Department of Adult Nursing, Child Health and Midwifery on her findings from the qualitative study into ‘The experiences of transition to parenthood for infertile couples after successful non-donor IVF.’
Helen Allan attended this conference and presented a paper on her current research: 'Transition to a Parenthood Identity: The Effects of Infertility and IVF on Heterosexual Non-Donor Infertile Couples' Experiences of Parenthood'.
Abstract: Recent social science research in the field of parenting following assisted conception has focused on the experiences of donor assisted conception and surrogacy.
This paper draws from a study which explored the experiences of the transition to early parenthood in 16 heterosexual non-donor couples and includes a specific consideration of the experiences of men as they navigate this journey. We argue that these couples’ transition to early parenthood can be as complex and provisional as in other newer forms of family making as they struggle with an emerging identity as a parent after successful non-donor IVF following their experiences of infertility. Their family making is contingent upon their ability to work at integrating their experiences of infertility and IVF into their emerging identity as a parent. This struggle is prominent when they contemplate a further pregnancy. Considering a sibling causes them further uncertainty and anxiety because it reminds them of their infertile identify and the possibility of further IVF.
We report novel findings about the experiences of this transition to parenthood: how couples’ identity as parents is shaped by the losses and grief of infertility and the anxiety of IVF. We argue that their struggle with an emerging parenthood identity challenges the normative, naturalised view of non-donor heterosexual IVF parenthood. Our work contributes to the work on identity in parenthood after IVF in an ongoing effort to understand how assisted technologies shape infertile parents’ lives. This paper reports a small study with a relatively homogenous sample recruited from one fertility clinic. Nevertheless as an exploratory study of an under researched topic, we discuss useful insights and ideas for further research with larger and more diverse samples.
Helen Allan has secured a Visiting Scholarship to the Centre for Reproductive Research at De Montfort University January – March 2019. She will be working on papers with Professor Nicky Hudson and her team which arise from the Early Parenthood after IVF study.
Helen’s collaborators on this study have been Professor Olga van den Akker (MU), Professor Lorraine Culley (DMU), Dr Ginny Mounce (University of Oxford), Jo Killingley, Lindsay Ahmed and Therese Bourne (MU) and Ruth Hudson (Surrey & Borders NHS Trust)
Paper presented: Early parenthood support needs following non-donor assisted conception: an integrative literature review.
Authors: Allan, van den Akker, Culley, Mounce, Odelius, Symon.
Paper presented: Metaphor use by patients with long-term conditions: a secondary qualitative data analysis.
Authors: Lempp, Healey, Allan, Santana-Suarez, Arber, Lawrence, Gillet, Bristowe.
Professor Tina Koch, Professor Helen Allan and Dr Anne Mitchell worked with eight Guyanese expatriate women to foster new understandings of diabetes and improved self-management of the chronic condition. This not only helped to boost recognition that learning in a group is empowering, but also developed a strong voice about living well with diabetes and a rejection of the myth that the condition is 'only a touch of sugar'.
Their findings were published in Action Research, and presented as a blog post on Action Research Plus.
Professor Helen Allan, Mike O’Driscoll, Dr Liang Liu and Dr Kevin Corbett (Middlesex University) and Professor Laura Serrant (NHS England) completed the evaluation of NHS England’s Compassion in Practice programme in September 2015.
Selected findings were presented at the RCN conference in Oxford by Professor Helen Allan and Mike O’Driscoll on 6th April 2017 , which sparked an interesting discussion. The presentation is available to download below as well as the full evaluation report.
Feedback or questions regarding the research are very welcome.