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Why do Older Black Adults Reminisce? An Examination of Reminiscence Functions in a Sample of Older Black Adults Juliette Shellman, Ph.D., APHN-BC Mukumbi.

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Presentation on theme: "Why do Older Black Adults Reminisce? An Examination of Reminiscence Functions in a Sample of Older Black Adults Juliette Shellman, Ph.D., APHN-BC Mukumbi."— Presentation transcript:

1 Why do Older Black Adults Reminisce? An Examination of Reminiscence Functions in a Sample of Older Black Adults Juliette Shellman, Ph.D., APHN-BC Mukumbi Brown, BSN, RN, Deborah Stone, MS, RN & Karen Addison, LCSW University of Massachusetts Lowell Juliette Shellman, Ph.D., APHN-BC Mukumbi Brown, BSN, RN, Deborah Stone, MS, RN & Karen Addison, LCSW University of Massachusetts Lowell

2 Acknowledgements Shellman, J. (PI) Patterns and Functions of Reminiscence in Black Adults. University of Massachusetts Lowell Advancing Research, Scholarship and Creative Work (ARSCW)Seed Grant STudents Advancing Reminiscence Research (STARR) Deborah Stone, Mukumbi Brown, Jeneba Jabbi, Gloria Adgwze, Jenna Connolly, Charly Darius, & Diane Furey

3 Specific Aims 1) Evaluate the reliability and validity of the Modified Reminiscence Function Scale in a sample of community-dwelling older Black adults. 2) Describe the patterns, and functions of reminiscence in a sample of community- dwelling older Blacks adults.

4 Reminiscence Functions Remembering past for a certain purpose Boredom reduction, conversation, death preparation, identity, intimacy maintenance, bitterness revival, problem solving, and teach-inform (Webster, 1993; 1997) Reminiscence Functions Scale (RFS) ( Robitaille et al., 2010; Webster, 1993;1997). –43 item, 8 factor scale –Subscale alpha scores ranges from Limits to generalizability –Testing completed on Caucasian, Canadian populations

5 Reminiscence Functions  Ethnicity and reminiscence functions in Black adults significant gap in reminiscence research.  Ethnicity identified as a moderator variable that may influence the occurrence, process, and outcomes of reminiscence. Webster, Bohlmeijer, & Westerhof (2010).  Pilot of Reminiscence Functions Scale with target population to test cultural acceptability and understandability (Shellman et al., 2009).

6 Reminiscence Functions Scale Pilot Findings indicated the RFS was not culturally acceptable to the sample. Participants had difficulty reading and understanding the directions. Items containing statements such as “I reminisce when time is heavy on my hands” had no cultural relevance for the sample. This led to a contextual examination of reminiscence functions in a sample of older Black adults.

7 A Contextual Examination of Reminiscence Functions in a Sample of Older Black Adults Themes: –Something Like a Big Dictionary Problem solving –Moving on Avoid reminiscing for death preparation and to bring back bitter memories –Fellowship, Faith and family Intimacy maintenance and conversation Not for boredom reduction –Teach the young Teach/inform –A Brand New Knowledge of Ourselves Self-identity

8 Modified Reminiscence Functions Scale Washington (2009) –Pilot with RFS and Focus Group –Reading level Cultural acceptability Scoring and length of time needed to complete

9 MRFS Item Response Examples 1 never 5 very often When I Reminisce it is to: bring back bitter memories M=2.1, SD=1.1 prepare for death M=2.3, SD=.98 keep old hurts alive M=2.4, SD=1.2 understand myself better M=4.6, SD=.54 teach young people about cultural values M=3.6, SD=.76

10 Modified Reminiscence Functions Scale (Washington, 2009) Alpha.94 Principal Component Analysis 39 item, 7 factor scale –Self-regard –Death –Bitterness –Intimacy –Teach-inform –Boredom –Conversation

11 Methods Descriptive study Senior centers, churches in Northeast urban cities Sample: English speaking blacks > 55 years of age. Methodology: Survey Administration Trained Black research assistants

12 Sample (N=201) Age 63.2 (SD=9.3) Gender 58 % female Ethnic group identified with: –43.8% Black American –22.1% African American –14.1% African –1% Haitian –1% Negro

13 Reminiscence Functions Overall scale alpha.94 Function MeanSD AlphaContextual Findings Death Preparation (6) “We think about living.” Teach/Inform (4) “They need to know our strong roots and morals.” Bitterness Revival (5) “We forget the bad times.” Intimacy maintenance (4) Family and Fellowship Self Regard (12) “We walk out of here with a brand new knowledge of ourselves.” Boredom (4) “I am never bored.” Conversation (4) “We reminisce about happy times.”

14 Discussion First known study to examine reminiscence functions in older Black adults. Previous research with Canadian, Caucasian populations ( Cappeliez & O’Rourke, 2002; 2006) show that this sample reminisces more frequently to teach and inform, intimacy maintenance, and self-regard. Less frequently for bitterness revival, death preparation, and boredom reduction.

15 Model of Reminiscence and Health Cappeliez & O’Rourke (2006) SELF-POSITIVE SELF- NEGATIVE PROSOCIAL Problem Solve Death prepIdentity BitternessBoredomIntimacy Converse Teach LS Psych Distress Perceived Health Health Conditions Problem- solving

16 Implications  Nursing Practice ◦ Influence the way integrative reminiscence is facilitated for positive mental health and well- being. ◦ Nursing Education ◦ Programs for students to learn to facilitate reminiscence with older adults.

17 Future Research ◦ CFA to examine underlying constructs of MRFS ◦ Examine reminiscence functions across the life span. ◦ Associations of reminiscence functions with mental health and well-being of older Black adults. ◦ Peer led Reminiscence Intervention for Minority Elders (PRIME).


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