Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


The purpose of this study was to explore the experiences of daughters who were a caregiver to a mother with Alzheimer's disease. In particular, women were surveyed about their experiences surrounding relationships, grief and loss, difficulties and role reversal. Additionally, participants were asked about possible family conflict and positive experiences that occurred as a result of caring for one's mother. 11 women were interviewed for this qualitative study. Open-ended questions were used in order for participants to provide narrative, descriptive accounts of their caregiving experiences. Additionally, participants were given the opportunity to provide thoughts on experiences not addressed in the interview guide. Findings emphasized the uniqueness of caring for a mother with Alzheimer's, even within the participant population. However, many women noted that they experienced grief and loss during the caregiving process. Additionally, the majority of participants experienced some type of role reversal while caring for one's mother. More research is needed in order to address the lack of diversity represented in this sample. Additionally, sampling women who simultaneously cared for both a mother as well as young children would provide for meaningful results as society continues to battle the ongoing effects of this tragic disease.


Thesis (M.S.W.)--Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, Mass., 2008. iii,86 p. Includes bibliographical references (p. 78-81)