Fortunate and fearful: Emotions evoked by home care policies for older people in Ireland
Item Type:Journal Article
Citation:Lolich, L. & Timonen, V., Fortunate and fearful: Emotions evoked by home care policies for older people in Ireland, Emotions and Society, 2, 1, 2020
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This article examines the emotions of fear and feeling fortunate experienced by key actors in home care services in Ireland. We take a relational approach to emotions, that is to say, an understanding that emotions are produced in social interactions and play an essential part in how people engage with, and respond to long-term care policies. The study involved focus groups and in-depth interviews with 104 participants. Our findings show that the most vulnerable participants, service users and care workers on precarious contracts, feel fortunate or fearful about outcomes that had or would have a direct impact on them: having a good carer and obtaining job satisfaction; or losing a home care package and not having enough work. Professionals were more likely to speak about luck and fear not in relation to what could happen to them directly but in relation to the fate of service users and care workers. The unregulated home care services in Ireland have influenced actors to construe their own and others’ participation in the system as increasingly individualized, where desired outcomes depend on one’s good luck or strong personal relationships. For the system to work properly trust needs to be present not only at the micro level of individual relationships but also at a system level. This could lead to a decline in emotions that centre around feeling fortunate and fearful, and an increase in expressions of trust and a sense of control by both care providers and care recipients.
Type of material:Journal Article
Series/Report no:Emotions and Society;
Availability:Full text available