Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: https://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.368921
Title: The significance of social support and close relationships for people with learning disabilities
Author: Lippold, Tessa
ISNI:       0000 0001 3610 8556
Awarding Body: Open University
Current Institution: Open University
Date of Award: 2000
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Abstract:
Background and aims The social and personal relationships of people with learning disabilities were explored, including the characteristics of their social networks, the extent of social integration and the availability of social support. It was hypothesised that people with learning disabilities would be less socially integrated, have more restricted social networks and more limited. social support than a comparison group of people with physical disabilities. Design and participants A mixed methodology was employed. In the-first part of the study participants were 30 people with learning disabilities, a nominated carer for each of the 30 participants and a comparison group of 17 people with physical disabilities. The second part of the investigation consisted of semi-structured interviews with 6 of the people with learning disabilities. Measures Measures used included-the Life Experiences Checklist, the Circles task, the Social Support Self Report, the Functional Support Inventory and the Social Circles Questionnaire. The author devised a semi-structured interview to assess understanding of different kinds of relationships. Transcripts were analysed using content analysis. Results Levels of integration were better than expected in all areas apart from relationships. Participants reported a mean social network size of 11.7, significantly lower than the comparison group. The networks of people with learning disabilities were largely composed of family or friends with learning disabilities whereas non-disabled friends made up the majority of the network for the comparison group. There were few differences between the groups in terms a of perceived social support. Themes identified from the interview data included the provision of emotional support by friends and betrayal of trust in romantic relationships. Implications The findings indicate that- people with learning disabilities may be functionally but not fully socially integrated within the community, thereby lacking opportunities to experience a wide range- of relationships-_ Directions for future research are suggested.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.368921  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Social networks; Friendship
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