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UBC Theses and Dissertations

How First Nations youth heal from attempting suicide : a phenomenological study Jones, Laura A.


The purpose of this study was to conduct an in-depth qualitative exploration of how First Nations youth heal from attempting suicide. In this study there were 12 participants (6 females and 6 males) who were 19 years of age or older. All of the participants experienced either one or more suicide attempts as a youth and at the time of the study had healed from attempting suicide and were comfortable talking about it. Youth was defined as between the ages of 15 to 29. At the time of the participants' suicide attempts, most of them resided in small communities or reserves on Vancouver Island or Northern, British Columbia. A phenomenological research method was used to get a rich description of the experience and meaning of how the participants healed from attempting suicide as a youth. Unstructured, one-on-one interviews designed to capture the essence of participants' stories were conducted. The interviews were audiotaped then transcribed. The transcripts were analyzed for significant statements. The meaning of each significant statement was formulated into meaning units then organized into clusters of themes. Finally, an exhaustive description of the themes and their meaning was conducted. The intention of this study was not to compare females and males but as the analysis unfolded it became apparent that there were important differences. Therefore, separate analysis was conducted for females and males.

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