Experiences of Becoming Emotionally Dysregulated. A Qualitative Study of Staff in Youth Residential Care
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionChild & Youth Services. 2021, 1-20. https://doi.org/10.1080/0145935X.2021.1918541
Trauma informed care (TIC) emphasizes the importance of professionals maintaining an emotionally regulated state. We interviewed eight staff members in a residential care unit for children and adolescents where TIC had been implemented, about situations wherein they experienced difficulty regulating their own emotions. We identified three major narratives in informants’ descriptions: (1) “Are we doing the right things?”, (2) “My childhood issues surfaced”, and (3) “Missing togetherness with trusted others.” The narratives illustrate the emotional strain that can be evoked when working in residential child welfare settings, and within TIC frameworks, and point to potential challenges to resolve when implementing TIC in similar organizations.