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what is the meaning of friendhship: Conduct an inductive thematic analysis on the data. lab report.

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Select a minimum of 5 pages (max. 10 pages) from each of the transcripts (Alexander’s interview and Louise’s interview) Conduct an inductive thematic analysis on the data Possible question - What is the meaning of friendship? Write up a report based on your analysis (maximum word limit 2500) but I would be happy with even 1000 words i am also happy to negotiate prices, thank you.
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Data: Louise’s Interview Alexander’s interview How did you choose your course of study? How do employers choose among job candidates? Would you trust any standardized battery of assessments sufficiently to choose your partner based solely on the results? Task...... 1 = very poor to 5 = excellent How would you rate the job ‘nurse’ ? Explain your answer to a person sitting next to you Compare the rating to the verbal explanation Positivism and the ‘standard view’ of science ‘the external world itself determines absolutely the one and only correct view that can be taken of it, independent of the process or circumstances of the viewing’ (Kirk and Miller, 1986: 14). objective knowledge; understanding that is unbiased and impartial; based on a view from ‘the outside’ Nagel (1986) - the ‘view from nowhere’ Features of the positivist approach objective knowledge (facts) can be gained from direct experience or observation, and is the only knowledge available to science; invisible or theoretical entities are rejected; science separates facts from values; it is value-free purpose of science is to develop universal causal laws by finding empirical regularities where two or more things appear together (a ‘constant conjunction’ of events). Constuctionism/constructivism phenomena of the social world (including all our knowledge of it) are not objective entities but are constructs of the mind arrived at (constructed) through social interaction Interpretivism humans though part of the natural world, are fundamentally different from other natural phenomena Possess both self-consciousness and language understand how language is used to construct a set of meanings in relation to some specific feature of human existence Qualitative research adopts a broadly constructivist/interpretivist approach to the social world, although it does not embody a single unified method of approach collection or interpretation of linguistic materials (texts) that can be subjected to analysis and interpreted for information about how social meanings are constructed in particular situations Thematic Analysis a method for identifying, analysing and reporting patterns (themes) within data Braun and Clarke: a useful basic method it works with a wide range of research questions; it can be used to analyse different types of data; it works with large or small data sets; it can be applied to produce data-driven or theory-driven analyses. Decisions What counts as a theme? captures something important about the data in relation to the research question, and represents some level of patterned response or meaning within the data set Inductive vs. deductive thematic analysis inductive – data driven deductive – theory driven Decisions Semantic/explicit level or a latent/interpretive level Semantic: progression from description to interpretation Six phases of thematic analysis: Familiarisation with the data: reading and re-reading the data and noting any analytic observations Coding: not simply a method of data reduction, it is also an analytic process; codes capture both the semantic and conceptual reading of the data Searching for themes: A theme is a coherent and meaningful pattern in the data relevant to the research question (coding your codes) Six phases of thematic analysis: Reviewing themes: checking that the themes ‘work’ in relation to both the coded extracts and the full data set Defining and naming themes Writing up: weaving together the analytic narrative and vivid data extracts to tell a reader a coherent and persuasive story about the data, contextualising it in relation to the existing literature. Braun, V., & Clarke, V. (2006). Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3(2), 77-101. doi: 10.1191/1478088706qp063oa Read Qualitative Research Practical Michael Cleary-Gaffney Louise https://vimeo.com/31849334 https://vimeo.com/31849400 https://vimeo.com/31849506 ALEXANDER https://vimeo.com/31840943 https://vimeo.com/31841311 https://vimeo.com/31841373 https://vimeo.com/31841735 Qualitative Research – Your Practical Report Select a minimum of 5 pages (max. 10 pages) from each of the transcripts (Alexander’s interview and Louise’s interview) Conduct an inductive thematic analysis on the data Possible question - What is the meaning of friendship? Write up a report based on your analysis (maximum word limit 2500) Submission deadline – 23rd March Discuss Braun and Clarke’s (2006) six phases – key challenges Theorising friendship Theory of reciprocal altruism (exchange theory) Alliance hypothesis – DeScioli and Kurzban (2009) Brooks, R. (2007). Friends, peers and higher education. British Journal of Sociology of Education, 28(6), 693-707. doi: 10.1080/01425690701609912 Emslie, C., Hunt, K., & Lyons, A. (2013). The role of alcohol in forging and maintaining friendships amongst Scottish men in midlife. Health Psychology, 32(1), 33-41. doi: 10.1037/a0029874 Lydon, J. E., Jamieson, D. W., & Holmes, J. G. (1997). The meaning of social interactions in the transition from acquaintanceship to friendship. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 73(3), 536-548. doi: 10.1037/0022-3514.73.3.536 Becker, J. A. H., Johnson, A. J., Craig, E. A., Gilchrist, E. S., Haigh, M. M., & Lane, L. T. (2009). Friendships are flexible, not fragile: Turning points in geographically-close and long-distance friendships. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 26(4), 347-369. doi: 10.1177/0265407509344310 Qualitative studies on friendship Chasin, C. J. D., & Radtke, H. L. (2012). “Friend Moments”: A Discursive Study of Friendship. Qualitative Research in Psychology. doi: 10.1080/14780887.2011.606068 Dupuis-Blanchard, S., Neufeld, A., & Strang, V. R. (2009). The Significance of Social Engagement in Relocated Older Adults. Qualitative Health Research, 19(9), 1186-1195. doi: 10.1177/1049732309343956 Tillmann-Healy, L. M. (2003). Friendship as Method. Qualitative Inquiry, 9(5), 729-749. doi: 10.1177/1077800403254894 Structure of the report Abstract; Introduction; Method*; Results*; Discussion Appendices (not included in word count) – include your annotated interview transcripts Method Include the following subheadings: Participants (one male, one female University student....) The interviews were conducted in Spring 2008 at Liverpool John Moores University by Tanya Corker and Alasdair Gordon-Finlayson. The aim of the interviews was to enable participants to talk at length about their experiences of friendships.   Nationality is provided in the videos and transcripts.  Student population so I presume 20-25 years.  Ethical considerations participants are identifiable Participants were explicitly informed that their anonymity and confidentiality could not be maintained Made aware of right to withdraw consent and withdraw data prior to it being made available for research purposes Given opportunity to review materials prior to publication and to edit or withdraw data Method – subheadings (continued) Data Collection (Semi-structured interviews: aim to enable participants to talk about their experiences of friendship; data had already been transcribed into text) Data Analysis – theoretical assumptions; own epistemological approach/assumptions Data Analysis Procedure – (refer to criteria for text selection and identify location of text for analysis; outline the actual process) Taleporos, G., & McCabe, M. P. (2002). Body image and physical disability - personal perspectives. Social Science & Medicine, 54, 971-980. “....a number of factors have affected this research, primarily the first author’s life experiences with a congenital physical disability. Over recent years, through personal struggles and through intimate discussions with his physically disabled friends and colleagues, the first author has developed a number of assumptions and hypotheses about body image, physical disability and society. These include that body image is a problematic issue for people with disabilities and that social attitudes towards physical difference are largely unfavourable. Furthermore, as a disability activist and a proponent of the social model of disability, the first author regards social forces as having a central role in shaping the experience of physical disability.” Hussain, D., & Bhushan, B. (2012). Posttraumatic Growth Experiences among Tibetan Refugees: A Qualitative Investigation. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 10(2), 204-216 “In qualitative research, beliefs and assumptions of the researcher may influence the interpretation of data. Therefore, it is important that we make statements about our own beliefs and assumptions associated to this study. The data for this study were collected as a part of my (first author) doctoral research. I was attracted to study PTG among Tibetan refugees because of my first hand encounter with many Tibetan refugees. I was intrigued by the thriving refugee communities and the pervasive impact of Buddhist culture in all aspects of their lives. It was evident that despite multiple traumatic experiences, Tibetan refugees continue to survive and attempt to heal through efforts to reconnect with their heritage. Therefore, interviews were designed to bring out these aspects.” Results Section Present themes with supportive quotes Organize findings according to chronology—steps of a decision making process Use case studies to illustrate cross -cutting themes cutting themes within a single case Everything we do involves some level of quantification Identifying a salient themes/pattern involves seeing something over and over again Anytime we take raw data and put it into categories and look for patterns it implies a numbered nature of these look for patterns. In qualitative research, the text (words of our informants) is our data, and thus we usually end up presenting some direct quotations. The challenge is how to identify what are illustrative quotes to present and how to balance the presentation of quotes with some interpretation of findings. 30 Avoid using too many quotes Often difficult to select one illustrative quote, so authors end up including too many quotes. There needs to be some synthesis/ interpretation of quotes in addition to the raw data. Readers lose sight of the main point, when there are too many quotes How to choose an illustrative quote There are no rules about what makes a good quote to include in a paper Often you have a selection of many quotes that represent a specific theme Choose quotes that most concisely represent the idea or theme you are trying to express Words or phrases that are memorable often make the best quotations Don’t choose quotations that are extreme outliers, unless this is that point your are trying to make in the paper Results Supported by illustrative quotations – “choose particularly vivid extracts which capture the essence of the point” Ellipses/ellipsis points ( . . . ) are to be used only to represent deleted words or phrases, and not pauses in speech. Set quotations of fewer than 40 words within regular sentences. Set quotations of 40 or more words as block quotes. (Use Word’s “Word Count” feature.) Indent block quotes by ½ inch (approximately 1.3 cm.) from the left margin only. (Use Word’s “Format > Paragraph” feature to create the indentation.) Type your quotations in 12-point Times New Roman font, double spaced. Do not use italics. “Extracts need to be embedded within an analytic narrative that compellingly illustrates the story that you are telling about your data, and your analytic narrative needs to go beyond description of the data, and make your argument in relation to the research question” (Braun & Clarke, 2006) Discussion Aim of the study, the research question asked and how this was achieved Links are made to previous research and some sort of critical debate is offered Offering substantial evidence that such links really do exist. Evidence might be linked to theories or Discussion The discussion should stick to the findings. It is sometimes tempting for the researcher to speculate about the meaning of his or her findings or to try to ‘get inside the head’ of the respondent and somehow ‘interpret’ what that respondent meant. Discussion The best approach is to both present the findings in a flat and factual way and to offer a discussion that never strays further than the limits of the data. However, it is also important that the findings are discussed and that the writer does not produce merely a bald account of some of his or her findings. Discussion Summarise the findings and provide applications to of the work Discuss the strengths of the work, the limitations and future studies. Some critique of the qualitative approach is acceptable however extensive criticism, to the detriment of engagement with the spirit and ethos of the approach, is not appropriate Discussion Suggestions for future research should relate to future qualitative research and/or research derived from findings of qualitative approach. Suggestions which rely heavily on reference to quantitative approaches as the only viable approach should be avoided.
Data: Louise’s Interview Alexander’s interview How did you choose your course of study? How do employers choose among job candidates? Would you trust any standardized battery of assessments sufficiently to choose your partner based solely on the results? Task...... 1 = very poor to 5 = excellent How would you rate the job ‘nurse’ ? Explain your answer to a person sitting next to you Compare the rating to the verbal explanation Positivism and the ‘standard view’ of science ‘the external world itself determines absolutely the one and only correct view that can be taken of it, independent of the process or circumstances of the viewing’ (Kirk and Miller, 1986: 14). objective knowledge; understanding that is unbiased and impartial; based on a view from ‘the outside’ Nagel (1986) - the ‘view from nowhere’ Features of the positivist approach objective knowledge (facts) can be gained from direct experience or observation, and is the only knowledge available to science; invisible or theoretical entities are rejected; science separates facts from values; it is value-free purpose of science is to develop universal causal laws by finding empirical regularities where two or more things appear together (a ‘constant conjunction’ of events). Constuctionism/constructivism phenomena of the social world (including all our knowledge of it) are not objective entities but are constructs of the mind arrived at (constructed) through social interaction Interpretivism humans though part of the natural world, are fundamentally different from other natural phenomena Possess both self-consciousness and language understand how language is used to construct a set of meanings in relation to some specific feature of human existence Qualitative research adopts a broadly constructivist/interpretivist approach to the social world, although it does not embody a single unified method of approach collection or interpretation of linguistic materials (texts) that can be subjected to analysis and interpreted for information about how social meanings are constructed in particular situations Thematic Analysis a method for identifying, analysing and reporting patterns (themes) within data Braun and Clarke: a useful basic method it works with a wide range of research questions; it can be used to analyse different types of data; it works with large or small data sets; it can be applied to produce data-driven or theory-driven analyses. Decisions What counts as a theme? captures something important about the data in relation to the research question, and represents some level of patterned response or meaning within the data set Inductive vs. deductive thematic analysis inductive – data driven deductive – theory driven Decisions Semantic/explicit level or a latent/interpretive level Semantic: progression from description to interpretation Six phases of thematic analysis: Familiarisation with the data: reading and re-reading the data and noting any analytic observations Coding: not simply a method of data reduction, it is also an analytic process; codes capture both the semantic and conceptual reading of the data Searching for themes: A theme is a coherent and meaningful pattern in the data relevant to the research question (coding your codes) Six phases of thematic analysis: Reviewing themes: checking that the themes ‘work’ in relation to both the coded extracts and the full data set Defining and naming themes Writing up: weaving together the analytic narrative and vivid data extracts to tell a reader a coherent and persuasive story about the data, contextualising it in relation to the existing literature. Braun, V., & Clarke, V. (2006). Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3(2), 77-101. doi: 10.1191/1478088706qp063oa Read Qualitative Research Practical Michael Cleary-Gaffney Louise https://vimeo.com/31849334 https://vimeo.com/31849400 https://vimeo.com/31849506 ALEXANDER https://vimeo.com/31840943 https://vimeo.com/31841311 https://vimeo.com/31841373 https://vimeo.com/31841735 Qualitative Research – Your Practical Report Select a minimum of 5 pages (max. 10 pages) from each of the transcripts (Alexander’s interview and Louise’s interview) Conduct an inductive thematic analysis on the data Possible question - What is the meaning of friendship? Write up a report based on your analysis (maximum word limit 2500) Submission deadline – 23rd March Discuss Braun and Clarke’s (2006) six phases – key challenges Theorising friendship Theory of reciprocal altruism (exchange theory) Alliance hypothesis – DeScioli and Kurzban (2009) Brooks, R. (2007). Friends, peers and higher education. British Journal of Sociology of Education, 28(6), 693-707. doi: 10.1080/01425690701609912 Emslie, C., Hunt, K., & Lyons, A. (2013). The role of alcohol in forging and maintaining friendships amongst Scottish men in midlife. Health Psychology, 32(1), 33-41. doi: 10.1037/a0029874 Lydon, J. E., Jamieson, D. W., & Holmes, J. G. (1997). The meaning of social interactions in the transition from acquaintanceship to friendship. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 73(3), 536-548. doi: 10.1037/0022-3514.73.3.536 Becker, J. A. H., Johnson, A. J., Craig, E. A., Gilchrist, E. S., Haigh, M. M., & Lane, L. T. (2009). Friendships are flexible, not fragile: Turning points in geographically-close and long-distance friendships. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 26(4), 347-369. doi: 10.1177/0265407509344310 Qualitative studies on friendship Chasin, C. J. D., & Radtke, H. L. (2012). “Friend Moments”: A Discursive Study of Friendship. Qualitative Research in Psychology. doi: 10.1080/14780887.2011.606068 Dupuis-Blanchard, S., Neufeld, A., & Strang, V. R. (2009). The Significance of Social Engagement in Relocated Older Adults. Qualitative Health Research, 19(9), 1186-1195. doi: 10.1177/1049732309343956 Tillmann-Healy, L. M. (2003). Friendship as Method. Qualitative Inquiry, 9(5), 729-749. doi: 10.1177/1077800403254894 Structure of the report Abstract; Introduction; Method*; Results*; Discussion Appendices (not included in word count) – include your annotated interview transcripts Method Include the following subheadings: Participants (one male, one female University student....) The interviews were conducted in Spring 2008 at Liverpool John Moores University by Tanya Corker and Alasdair Gordon-Finlayson. The aim of the interviews was to enable participants to talk at length about their experiences of friendships.   Nationality is provided in the videos and transcripts.  Student population so I presume 20-25 years.  Ethical considerations participants are identifiable Participants were explicitly informed that their anonymity and confidentiality could not be maintained Made aware of right to withdraw consent and withdraw data prior to it being made available for research purposes Given opportunity to review materials prior to publication and to edit or withdraw data Method – subheadings (continued) Data Collection (Semi-structured interviews: aim to enable participants to talk about their experiences of friendship; data had already been transcribed into text) Data Analysis – theoretical assumptions; own epistemological approach/assumptions Data Analysis Procedure – (refer to criteria for text selection and identify location of text for analysis; outline the actual process) Taleporos, G., & McCabe, M. P. (2002). Body image and physical disability - personal perspectives. Social Science & Medicine, 54, 971-980. “....a number of factors have affected this research, primarily the first author’s life experiences with a congenital physical disability. Over recent years, through personal struggles and through intimate discussions with his physically disabled friends and colleagues, the first author has developed a number of assumptions and hypotheses about body image, physical disability and society. These include that body image is a problematic issue for people with disabilities and that social attitudes towards physical difference are largely unfavourable. Furthermore, as a disability activist and a proponent of the social model of disability, the first author regards social forces as having a central role in shaping the experience of physical disability.” Hussain, D., & Bhushan, B. (2012). Posttraumatic Growth Experiences among Tibetan Refugees: A Qualitative Investigation. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 10(2), 204-216 “In qualitative research, beliefs and assumptions of the researcher may influence the interpretation of data. Therefore, it is important that we make statements about our own beliefs and assumptions associated to this study. The data for this study were collected as a part of my (first author) doctoral research. I was attracted to study PTG among Tibetan refugees because of my first hand encounter with many Tibetan refugees. I was intrigued by the thriving refugee communities and the pervasive impact of Buddhist culture in all aspects of their lives. It was evident that despite multiple traumatic experiences, Tibetan refugees continue to survive and attempt to heal through efforts to reconnect with their heritage. Therefore, interviews were designed to bring out these aspects.” Results Section Present themes with supportive quotes Organize findings according to chronology—steps of a decision making process Use case studies to illustrate cross -cutting themes cutting themes within a single case Everything we do involves some level of quantification Identifying a salient themes/pattern involves seeing something over and over again Anytime we take raw data and put it into categories and look for patterns it implies a numbered nature of these look for patterns. In qualitative research, the text (words of our informants) is our data, and thus we usually end up presenting some direct quotations. The challenge is how to identify what are illustrative quotes to present and how to balance the presentation of quotes with some interpretation of findings. 30 Avoid using too many quotes Often difficult to select one illustrative quote, so authors end up including too many quotes. There needs to be some synthesis/ interpretation of quotes in addition to the raw data. Readers lose sight of the main point, when there are too many quotes How to choose an illustrative quote There are no rules about what makes a good quote to include in a paper Often you have a selection of many quotes that represent a specific theme Choose quotes that most concisely represent the idea or theme you are trying to express Words or phrases that are memorable often make the best quotations Don’t choose quotations that are extreme outliers, unless this is that point your are trying to make in the paper Results Supported by illustrative quotations – “choose particularly vivid extracts which capture the essence of the point” Ellipses/ellipsis points ( . . . ) are to be used only to represent deleted words or phrases, and not pauses in speech. Set quotations of fewer than 40 words within regular sentences. Set quotations of 40 or more words as block quotes. (Use Word’s “Word Count” feature.) Indent block quotes by ½ inch (approximately 1.3 cm.) from the left margin only. (Use Word’s “Format > Paragraph” feature to create the indentation.) Type your quotations in 12-point Times New Roman font, double spaced. Do not use italics. “Extracts need to be embedded within an analytic narrative that compellingly illustrates the story that you are telling about your data, and your analytic narrative needs to go beyond description of the data, and make your argument in relation to the research question” (Braun & Clarke, 2006) Discussion Aim of the study, the research question asked and how this was achieved Links are made to previous research and some sort of critical debate is offered Offering substantial evidence that such links really do exist. Evidence might be linked to theories or Discussion The discussion should stick to the findings. It is sometimes tempting for the researcher to speculate about the meaning of his or her findings or to try to ‘get inside the head’ of the respondent and somehow ‘interpret’ what that respondent meant. Discussion The best approach is to both present the findings in a flat and factual way and to offer a discussion that never strays further than the limits of the data. However, it is also important that the findings are discussed and that the writer does not produce merely a bald account of some of his or her findings. Discussion Summarise the findings and provide applications to of the work Discuss the strengths of the work, the limitations and future studies. Some critique of the qualitative approach is acceptable however extensive criticism, to the detriment of engagement with the spirit and ethos of the approach, is not appropriate Discussion Suggestions for future research should relate to future qualitative research and/or research derived from findings of qualitative approach. Suggestions which rely heavily on reference to quantitative approaches as the only viable approach should be avoided.
Running head: WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE A Qualitative Study of Women’s Self-Concept During Menopause Leanne Kelly 17521573 Supervisor: Dr. Caoimhe Hannigan Thesis Presented in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Bachelor of Arts (Hons) Degree in Psychology, Submitted to the National College of Ireland, March 2020. WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE I Submission of Thesis to Norma Smurfit Library, National College of Ireland Student name: Leanne Kelly Student number: 17521573 School: School of Business Course: Psychology Degree to be awarded: B.A. (Hons) in Psychology Title of Thesis: A Qualitative Study of Women’s Self-Concept During Menopause One hard bound copy of your thesis will be lodged in the Norma Smurfit Library and will be available for consultation. The electronic copy will be accessible in TRAP (http://trap.ncirl.ie/), the National College of Ireland’s Institutional Repository. In accordance with normal academic library practice all theses lodged in the National College of Ireland Institutional Repository (TRAP) are made available on open access. I agree to a hard-bound copy of my thesis being available for consultation in the library. I also agree to an electronic copy of my thesis being made publicly available on the National College of Ireland’s Institutional Repository TRAP. Signature of Candidate: Leanne Kelly For completion by the School: The aforementioned thesis was received by______________________ Date: _____________ http://trap.ncirl.ie/ WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE II Submission of Thesis and Dissertation National College of Ireland Research Students Declaration Form (Thesis/Author Declaration Form) Name: Leanne Kelly Student Number: 17521573 Degree for which thesis is submitted: B.A. (Hons) in Psychology Material submitted for award (a) I declare that the work has been composed by myself. (b) I declare that all verbatim extracts contained in the thesis have been distinguished by quotation marks and the sources of information specifically acknowledged. (c) My thesis will be included in electronic format in the College Institutional Repository TRAP (thesis reports and projects) (d) I declare that no material contained in the thesis has been used in any other submission for an academic award. Signature of research student: Leanne Kelly Date: 28/02/2020 WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE III Acknowledgements Firstly, I would like to thank the participants who gave up their time to help me conduct this research - I greatly appreciate it. I would like to thank my supervisor, Caoimhe, who has guided and reassured me every step of the way, and all the staff at NCI who have provided me with the tools to progress to this stage in my degree. My amazing Mam, my Dad, my Nanny, and my wonderful boyfriend, Jordan, who have all put up with me through the trials and tribulations of this research project. And last, but by no means least, my amazing friends – my hot girl scholars – who have supported and motivated me every day without fail; I couldn’t have done it without you all. WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE IV Abstract Background and Aims: Much like puberty in adolescents, the mid-life transition to menopause by women is characterized by many physical, social and psychological changes. Previous research has investigated various aspects of women’s experience of and attitudes towards menopause, but little qualitative research has examined women’s self-concept during this phase. There is also limited research surrounding menopause in general within an Irish context. Therefore, the aim of this research was to explore Irish women’s experience of the menopausal transition and to understand if and how their experience has impacted their self-concept. Method: Participants who had experienced symptoms associated with the natural menopause transition in the previous two years were recruited via convenience sampling (N = 10). All participants were Irish, and their ages ranged from 43-54 years (M = 49.70, SD = 3.65). Semi- structured interviews were conducted with each participant which included questions relating to various dimensions of women’s self-concept (e.g. self-esteem and body-image). The data were analysed with adherence to Braun and Clarke’s (2006) six phases of thematic analysis. Results: Four key themes were identified: (i) Loss of identity, womanhood and control, (ii) Negative self- appraisal, (iii) Impact of menopause and self-concept on quality of life, (iv) Positive changes in self-concept; a time for self-compassion and self-acceptance. Conclusions: The experience of menopause is unique to every woman. The negative impact that the experience can have on one’s self-concept should be considered by health care practitioners to maximize support for women during this significant developmental period. Keywords: Menopause; self-concept; identity; self-image; body-image; thematic analysis WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE V Table of Contents A Qualitative Study of Women’s Self-Concept During Menopause ................................... 1 Methods............................................................................................................................. 13 Participants .................................................................................................................... 13 Data Collection ............................................................................................................. 14 Study Procedure ............................................................................................................ 15 Ethical Considerations .............................................................................................. 16 Data Analysis ................................................................................................................ 17 Data Analysis Procedure ............................................................................................... 17 Results ............................................................................................................................... 18 Loss of identity, womanhood and control ..................................................................... 19 Negative self-appraisal.................................................................................................. 23 Negative impact of menopause and self-concept on quality of life .............................. 26 Positive changes in self-concept; a time for self-compassion and self-acceptance ...... 29 Discussion ......................................................................................................................... 31 Strengths and Limitations ............................................................................................. 35 Implications and Future Research ................................................................................. 36 References ......................................................................................................................... 38 Appendices ........................................................................................................................ 49 WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 1 A Qualitative Study of Women’s Self-Concept During Menopause The human life cycle encompasses a wide range of biologically determined critical points (Beyene, 1986). Much like puberty in adolescents, the mid-life transition into menopause by women is characterized by many physical, social and psychological changes (Kumari, Stafford, & Marmot, 2005). The beginning of what one would typically consider ‘menopause’, is known as the perimenopausal transition; characterised by deviations in normal ovulatory cycles, and menstrual irregularities, including the onset of menopausal symptoms (Speroff, 2002). The typical age range for entry into this stage is 39-51 years, with an average duration of five years (Treloar, 1981). Common symptoms that are experienced by women in this phase include hot flashes, heavy and irregular periods, urinary incontinence and infections, vaginal atrophy, reduced sexual function, sleep disturbances and cognitive disturbances (Woods & Mitchell, 2005). Menopause occurs with the loss of ovarian follicular function, resulting in the permanent cessation of menstruation, which is clinically diagnosed when twelve consecutive months of amenorrhea have occurred (Kahwati, Haigler, & Rideout, 2005). According to the longitudinal Massachusetts Women’s Health Study (McKinlay, Brambilla, & Posner, 1992), menopause is reached at an average age of 51 years, with an age range of 44-56 years (Treloar, 1974). The transition to menopause may also increase the risk of some chronic conditions including coronary heart disease and osteoporosis, with some epidemiological studies showing possible associations with increased incidence of arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease, periodontal disease, skin atrophy, and cancer (Greendale, Lee, & Arriola, 1999). Most women experience similar menopausal symptoms, with approximately 85% reporting that they have experienced ≥1 symptom (McKinlay et al.,1992). In a sample of 6201 menopausal women from the US, 60% reported seeking health care for their menopausal symptoms, with 50% reporting that they use WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 2 hormone replacement therapy (HRT) or HRT and alternative medicines combined (Williams et al., 2007). In addition to physiological symptoms, the menopausal transition is associated with a range of psychological and social outcomes. It is important to note that menopause does not occur in isolation from any social or psychological changes that may also occur at this phase in a woman’s life (Deeks, 2003). Deeks (2003) stresses the importance of incorporating the context of a woman’s life into our understanding of menopause, including due regard to her psychological state, cultural and social background, the age at which menopause was reached, etc. As previously mentioned, some women experience cognitive disturbances during this phase, as well as depression, anxiety and irritability (George, 2002). However, to give meaning to the concept of menopause, one must also consider co-occurring psychosocial factors such as stressful life events, role demands, inadequate coping skills and possible past psychiatric disorders (Avis, Brambilla, McKinlay, & Vass, 1994; Kaufert et al., 1992; Woods & Mitchell, 1997). For instance, studies have found that various psychosocial factors are linked with depression during menopause, including self-concept, attitudes, social learning, coping skills and changes in health status during their transition to menopause (Avis & McKinlay, 1991; Kaufert et al., 1992). Both the physical and psychosocial implications of menopause have been found to impact various aspects of women’s lives, including their relationships, their family and their work (Hvas & Gannik, 2008; Parish, Faubion, Weinberg, Bernick, & Mirkin, 2019). However, these impacts of the menopause vary widely among women due to differences in social, cultural and individual attitudes and perceptions (Avis & Crawford, 2008; Beyene, 1986; Martin, Block, Sanchez, Arnaud, & Beyene, 1993; Richters, 1997; Robinson, 1996). Beyene (1986) noted that if menopause is primarily a hormonal event, it would suffice to say that WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 3 all women would experience symptoms in the same way, which is not the case. Nevertheless, for many years, menopause has been viewed from a narrow biomedical perspective, which has proved problematic for many women and has led to the development of multiple negative stereotypes surrounding menopause (Rostosky & Travis, 1996). In earlier Western society, menopause was often defined as an estrogen-deficiency disease or ovarian dysfunction that results in a number of illnesses (Greenblatt & Bruneteau, 1974). Rostosky and Travis (1996) analysed articles published in various journals between 1984-1994 and found that the majority of publications, whether in medical or psychology journals, are based directly or indirectly on a biomedical model of menopause as a deficiency disease. Although menopause is now more widely accepted as a normal and natural event in the life cycle of females, the ‘medicalization’ of menopause in Western societies is still occurring, and has been thought to contribute to the high prevalence of menopausal symptom reporting in Europe and North America (Beyene, 1986; Freeman & Sherif, 2007), and an increase in the use of HRT (see Stuenkel et al., 2015). However, due to the large variance among women’s experience of menopause, it is suggested that the transition should be considered as a bio-psycho-social-cultural transition, rather than being understood solely from a biomedical perspective (Hunter & Rendall, 2007). The necessity for a shift in perspective is not limited to menopause; it has long since been recognised that there are major limitations to the traditional biomedical model of health within the domain of health care and general practice. Engel (1977) proposed the idea of a new model of health and illness, acknowledging that the boundaries between ‘health’ and ‘disease’ will never be clear and will never be fully explained by biological criteria, as they are diffused by cultural, social and psychological factors. Social Influences WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 4 The biomedical discourse was recently highlighted in Hvas and Gannik’s (2008) exploratory research as something that women experiencing menopause relate to. In their study, nearly all women referred to biomedical terms when speaking about their experience of menopause (e.g. ‘a period of decline and decay’) even if they did not agree with this view. They also identified six other discourses: (i) ‘Forever young’ discourse - menopause as a barrier to youthfulness and longevity; (ii) Health-promoting discourse - menopause as a barrier to good health and physical fitness, (iii) Consumer discourse - menopause as a process for which women can make informed and educated choices with the help of health care practitioners, (iv) Alternative discourse - menopause as a positive, natural process but also as an imbalance in the body which can be treated with natural substances, (v) Feminist/critical discourse - menopause as a natural, positive event which is medicalized by the medical profession, and (vi) Existential discourse - menopause as a time of self-discovery and personal growth. These discourses highlight the significance of how the menopausal transition is portrayed in a social context; women’s experience of menopause is influenced by the way it is talked about within society, which ultimately affects many aspects of their social and personal lives, including marriage, work and family (Hvas & Gannik, 2008). Similarly, Gannon and Ekstrom (1993) conducted a study with 372 women and 209 men who were randomly assigned to three groups. They were asked to complete questionnaires on their attitudes towards either (i) three medical issues, (ii) three life transitions or (iii) three aspects of ageing, all of which included menopause. Those who were assigned to the medical issues group had significantly more negative attitudes towards menopause than those who were assigned to the other two sociocultural paradigms. Again, this highlights the significance of how menopause is spoken about and portrayed in a social context. Cultural Influences WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 5 In addition to the aforementioned social influences, differences in women’s experience of menopause can be seen cross-culturally. Beyene (1986) found that many Mayan women viewed pregnancy as a dangerous and stressful experience, which according to interviews with their medical personnel, was the greatest gynaecological problem among Mayan women - not menopause. In contrast to their negative experience of childbearing, menopause was described by these women as a new sense of freedom and youth, and a sense of relief from menstruation and anxiety surrounding pregnancy, which resulted in improved sexual relationships with their husbands. Similarly, Stewart (2003) found that many Guatemalan Mayan women are overjoyed when they reach menopause due to the freedom and status that it is associated with. However, in societies where fertility is highly valued, women tend to hold more negative attitudes towards menopause (Khademi & Cooke, 2003). Researchers have suggested that the variance in menopausal experience and symptoms can be attributed to variance in culture, as studies have found that menopausal women in non-western societies tend to report fewer symptoms than menopausal women in Europe and the United States (e.g. Dennerstein, 1996; Lock, 1994). It should be noted however, that there appears to be a lack of research around Irish women’s experience of menopause (Carolan, 2000). The main themes identified within Carolan’s (2000) study were that women of high parity in rural Ireland experienced a shared sense of relief at reaching menopause, particularly related to the end of their childbearing years; a sense of acceptance of menopause as a natural event in a woman’s life cycle; and a sense of satisfaction after successfully raising their families. Carolan (2000) recommends that further research is needed to develop a more comprehensive understanding of Irish women’s experiences of menopause. Hoga, Rodolpho, Gonçalves, and Quirino (2015) recently conducted a systematic review of qualitative studies investigating women’s experience of natural menopause worldwide. WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 6 Although only 24 studies met the inclusion criteria (N = 575), an indicator of a lack of research in this area, the six primary findings were that menopause is a natural event in a woman’s life that is closely associated with psychosocial events of midlife and aging; the physical and emotional changes of menopause strongly affect women; menopause is a time characterized by gains and losses; resilience is improved and coping strategies are adopted to enhance wellbeing; health issues, family and marital relations, sociocultural backgrounds and the meanings attributed to the women’s sex life determine sexual satisfaction during menopause; and that women should be prepared and have their needs supported. Individual Influences In addition to social and cultural influences, individual perceptions and attitudes have also been found to impact women’s experience of menopause and their psychological adjustment during this phase. These individual differences are crucial for providing effective and tailored care, which is why healthcare professionals should acquire a “capacity to understand the patient’s inner world – the values she lives by, her thoughts, feelings and fears; her perception of the [injury] and its effect on her life.” (McWhinney, 1997, p.64). Extensive research has been conducted on women’s attitudes towards the menopausal transition. Women are more likely to report menopausal symptoms - and suffer more from them - if they hold negative attitudes towards the transition, than women who hold more positive attitudes (Avis, Crawford, & McKinlay, 1997; Ayers, Forshaw & Hunter, 2010; Bloch, 2002; Sievert & Espinosa-Hernandez, 2003). By contrast, those who hold more positive attitudes towards menopause tend to view the transition as a natural life process (Ayers et al., 2010; Dolińska-Zygmunt & Włodarczyk, 2012). Women’s attitudes towards menopause have also been found to vary across stages of their transition. For example, most women who are only beginning to experience symptoms of WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 7 menopause describe it very negatively (Marvan, Castillo-López, & Arroyo, 2013), while those who are post-menopausal often describe the transition as a sense of relief and satisfaction (e.g. Carolan, 2000). Brown, Brown, Judd, and Bryant (2017) also found that within a sample of 387 women at various stages of the menopause, those who reported themselves as postmenopausal had significantly more positive cognitive and emotional representations of the menopause than those who were premenopausal and perimenopausal. Longitudinal studies have shown that these differences in attitudes are not static. For example, Busch, Barth-Olofsson, Rosenhagen and Collins (2003) assessed 130 healthy women over the course of five years through both quantitative and qualitative methods, finding that 57% held neutral beliefs about menopause, 31% had negative beliefs (pessimistic), and 12% had positive beliefs (optimistic), with negative appraisals significantly relating to higher levels of symptom reporting. However, at the last follow up, 67% of the women appraised menopause positively, compared with the previous 12%, which was found to be associated with statements of personal growth among the previously pessimistic appraisal group. Associations have been found between attitudes towards menopause and well-being and quality of life. Within a sample of 1503 Australian-born women at various stages of the menopausal transition, Dennerstein, Smith and Morse (1994) found that menopausal status did not significantly affect well-being, but well-being was significantly related to current health status (psychosomatic symptoms and respiratory symptoms), history of premenstrual complaints, overall health, interpersonal stress, and attitudes to ageing and to menopause. Despite these variations, numerous studies have found that attitudes towards menopause, and not menopausal status, are significantly related to well-being/quality of life (e.g. Dennerstein, Smith, & Morse, 1994; Dennerstein, 1996), with negative attitudes resulting in negative moods (Dennerstein, WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 8 1996) and maladaptive schemas, e.g. vulnerability/isolation, which affects well-being (Hashemipoor, Jafari, & Zabihi, 2019). Well-being and quality of life have repeatedly been associated with dimensions of self-concept such as self-esteem across various populations (e.g. Diener & Diener, 2009; Mohanty & Sahoo, 2015; Ritchie, Sedikides, Wildschut, Arndt, & Gidron, 2011; Sowislo & Orth, 2013). If attitudes and perceptions of menopause have been shown to impact experience of menopause, well-being and quality of life, and these constructs have been associated with self-concept and self-esteem, then it may be the case that self-concept might be impacted by the menopause. Menopause and Self-Concept To understand adult development and ageing, many lifespan researchers have concluded that the self is an important element which must be considered (Baltes & Baltes, 1990; Whitbourne, 1985). According to humanistic theorist Carl Rogers (1959), the self-concept is composed of one’s self-image, self-esteem or self-worth, and one’s ideal self. It is the product of a collection of self-schemas, defined through self-evaluations, that makes up one’s overall self- concept (Beck, Steer, Epstein, & Brown, 1990). At present, the majority of researchers adopt a multidimensional perspective of self-concept, based on the multidimensional hierarchical model of self-concept (Shavelson, Hubner, & Stanton, 1976), which incorporates various domains into self-concept, e.g. social, emotional and academic contexts. Self-concept is often seen as a component within the broad construct of identity (Adamson, Hartman, & Lyxell, 1999), which is comprised of the individual’s mental representation of themselves. Individuals’ self-concept develops and changes throughout the lifespan with exposure to sensory and behavioural experience, physical body changes and societal norms (O’Brien, 1980; Pasquali, 1999). Identity and self-concept have been studied across a range of populations, with a particular focus on WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 9 adolescents and, notably, their academic self-concept (e.g. von Keyserlingk, Becker, & Jansen, 2019). Most of these studies have utilized quantitative methodology, for example the Beck Self- Concept Test (Beck et al., 1990). Across populations, self-concept clarity has been negatively related to measures of psychological distress (e.g., anxiety and negative affect) and is associated with an increase in subjective well-being (Campbell et al., 1996; De Cremer & Sedikides, 2005; Lavallee & Campbell, 1995; Slotter, Gardner, & Finkel, 2010). Shu, Luh, Li, and Lu (2007) investigated self-concept in a sample of Taiwanese women at varying stages of menopause. A Chinese version of the Tennessee Self-Concept Scale (Fitts & Roid, 1964) was used to measure physical self, moral-ethical self, psychological self, family self, social self and academic attainment self. 92.5% of the women’s self-concept were within the normal range, but slightly lower than that of the adult population of Taiwan, while 7.5% had an abnormal score, scoring most poorly on measures of physical self and academic self. Low physical self scores were a significant predictor of psychological and physiological menopause symptoms, which led the authors to conclude that a positive self-concept is a protective factor for psychological distress and physiological symptoms associated with menopause. Self-esteem and other dimensions of self-concept were also found to predict life satisfaction in 40.3% of a sample of 404 perimenopausal and postmenopausal women (Martínez, González-Arratia, Oudhof van Barneveld, Domínguez-Espinosa, & Olivos-Rubio, 2012). Similarly, Castiglione, Licciardello, and Rampullo (2015) found that women who hold a positive representation of the self, adapt better to menopausal changes than those with negative representations of the self. From a qualitative approach, Svenson (2005) interviewed ten menopausal women to investigate their sense of self, as he notes that there is a lack of literature surrounding women’s identity consolidation during this phase of life. By contrast to the findings proposed by Shu et al. (2007), WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 10 Svenson (2005) found that women’s experience of physical and emotional disruption can affect their sense of self, with many participants describing changes in self-identity. Body-image, a physical dimension of self-concept, can be defined as an individual’s “internal, subjective representation of physical appearance and bodily experience” (Pruzinsky & Cash, 1990, p.338) and is integral to one’s identity and self-concept. Body image attitudes are closely linked with self-esteem, confidence, eating and exercise behaviours, emotional stability and sexual behaviours (Cash, 1990; Thompson, Heinberg, Altabe, & Tantleff-Dunn, 1999), however the influences of body image in specific life contexts are often ignored in research (Pruzinsky & Cash, 1990), despite the growing prevalence of negative body image, especially among women (Cash, 1997; Cash & Fleming, 2002). Beauty and youth are often seen as synonymous in society (Alderson, 1991), which can result in the experience of body image disturbances by women in their mid/older adult life. Vasomotor instability (e.g., hot flashes, night sweats) in menopausal women can lead to irregularities in body image and can often make women feel like they are not in control of their bodies (Chrisler & Ghiz, 1993). The bodily changes that occur during a woman’s transition through menopause can alter the way they think or feel about themselves and their body (Chrisler & Ghiz, 1993). Despite this, few empirical studies have assessed body image among women experiencing menopause, particularly perceptions of body image (Deeks & McCabe, 2001). However, Deeks and McCabe (2001) did find that menopausal women within their sample were characterized by a negative body image and experiencing negative emotions regarding the appearance and function of their bodies. Walter (2000) used qualitative methods by interviewing a sample of 21 menopausal women and uncovered a range of ideas of how menopause influences women’s sense of self; physically, emotionally, socially, and cognitively. They identified an underlying theme of uncertainty WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 11 amongst menopausal women; many women spoke of feeling out of control, vulnerable, and disconnected from their bodies. Perimenopausal and menopausal women have also been shown to be less positive about their appearance and fitness and score lower on measures related to attractiveness and the way women feel about the way they look, than premenopausal women (Deeks & McCabe, 2001). However, as previously mentioned, it should be noted that this may also be influenced by the broader process of ageing and other psychosocial factors. Self-esteem is a dimension of self-concept which is related to self-awareness, emotions, cognitions, behaviour, lifestyle and socio-economic factors (Greenberg, 2008). Typically, high self-esteem is related to positive components such as optimism, psychological well-being and successful coping (Harrington & Loffredo, 2001), which have been associated with decreases in all-cause mortality (Chida & Steptoe, 2008). Those who experience low self-esteem are usually more susceptible to anxious thoughts, depressed moods and increased health problems (Chedraui et al., 2010). However, Chedraui et al. (2010) surprisingly found that in a sample of 149 women, age, menopausal status and time since menopause onset were not predictive of self-esteem scores. They suggest that self-esteem of menopausal women may be influenced by social factors such as changing roles, co-occurring life events or dissatisfaction with one’s body image. Pérez- López, Chedraui, Gilbert and Pérez-Roncero (2009) also suggest that low self-esteem may be due to co-morbid conditions such as sleep disorders, depression, anxiety, elevated body weight, eating disorders or musculoskeletal disorders. However, Pinquart and Sorensen (2001) argue that self-esteem in the later stages of life should not be underestimated, as their meta-analysis found that older women scored significantly lower on subjective well-being (e.g. happiness, self- esteem, life satisfaction) than their male counterparts. Similarly, women’s experience of low self- WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 12 esteem is cause for concern as it has been highlighted as a risk factor for depression and feelings of helplessness (Beutel, Glaesmer, Decker, Fischbeck, & Brähler, 2009). Guérin, Goldfield and Prud’homme (2017) found that women transitioning through menopause who scored higher on self-esteem, body image and general health perceptions were more likely to experience greater positive psychological outcomes over a five year period, implying that more focus on women’s self-concept may allow for a healthier psychological adjustment during this period. Numerous studies have investigated dimensions of self-concept in those who experienced premature menopause due to medical intervention (e.g. Liao, Wood, & Conway, 2000; Shepard, 1990; Parlee, 1990; Pasquali, 1999), or have used quantitative methods to assess self-concept (e.g. Heidari, Ghodusi, & Rafiei, 2017; Shu et al., 2007), but few studies have assessed self-concept within women experiencing natural menopause from a qualitative approach. Similarly, very little research has examined the self-concepts or experiences of menopausal women within Irish populations (Carolan, 2000). As most of the research has investigated women’s attitudes towards menopause itself (e.g. Avis et al., 1997; Ayers et al., 2010; Brown et al., 2017; Busch et al., 2003; Khademi & Cooke, 2003; Marvan et al., 2013; Sievert & Espinosa-Hernandez, 2003), the literature fails to capture women’s self-concept and identity during this critical developmental period. The Current Study The current study will adopt an inductive approach to uncover any and all relevant themes surrounding women’s self-concept. It will address the following question: How do women describe their self-concept during their experience of natural menopause? The aim of this research is to explore Irish women’s experience of the menopausal transition and to understand if and how their experience has impacted their self-concept. Ultimately, this will lead to a greater WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 13 understanding of their experience and shape the way for interventions to promote more positive developmental outcomes for women during this significant life transition. Methods Participants Participants were recruited online via convenience sampling. Posts outlining the nature of the study were placed in various women’s/menopause support groups on Facebook, e.g. The Irish Menopause, and the researcher’s personal Facebook page, where potential eligible participants were invited to email the researcher at the contact details provided, should they wish to partake. Inclusion criteria for the current study were women over the age of 18 years, who have experienced symptoms associated with the natural menopausal transition in the previous two years, at the exclusion of women who were experiencing symptoms of early menopause due to medical intervention (e.g. chemotherapy, hysterectomy). This distinction has been made due to the notable differences in women’s experiences of natural and medically induced menopause. Kaufert (1990) mentions that “methodologically speaking, the naturally and the artificially menopausal should neither be combined in the same study population, nor should generalism be made from one set of women to the other. Yet, both these practices are common” (p. 117). There is a lack of agreement in the literature on appropriate sample size for qualitative studies. The literature often specifies that a sufficient sample must be recruited to achieve data saturation. Guest, Bunce, and Johnson (2006) define data saturation as ‘the point in data collection and analysis when new information produces little or no change to the codebook’ (p. 65). Data saturation has often been described as the ‘gold standard’ for determining sample size in qualitative research (e.g. Guest et al., 2006), however, few researchers agree on how or when this saturation is achieved, as noted in a recent review by Braun and Clarke (2019). For example, WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 14 after conducting sixty in-depth interviews and conducting a thematic analysis on the data, Guest et al. (2006) claim that saturation and variability occurred within the first twelve interviews. By contrast, Eynon, Donnell, and Williams (2018) reported that data saturation had been achieved after the analysis of eight interview transcripts. Braun and Clarke (2019) advise that researchers should determine their sample size within the process of data collection, with due regard to the adequacy (richness and complexity) of the data for addressing the research question. For the current study, a total of 14 women demonstrated an interest in partaking. However, due to cancellations, geographical distance, and lack of participants’ availability during the time scale the interviews were due to take place, the final sample consisted of 10 women. Six participants, including the participant who partook in the pilot study, were recruited via the researcher’s personal Facebook page, while four were recruited from the specific support pages. Participants ages ranged from 43-54 years (M = 49.70, SD = 3.65). All participants were Irish and identified as female. Data Collection As this study is qualitative by design, semi-structured interviews were conducted by the researcher on a one-to-one basis, to enable participants to explore their own experience of menopause, without having to adhere to a rigid schedule. This broad schedule (See Appendix A) was devised by the researcher with due regard to the proposed research question and aims, and included both general and specific questions relating to women’s self-concept, self-image, self- esteem, identity, body-image, etc. It includes open-ended questions and prompts to capture the essence of participants’ experience. The schedule was used flexibly, with some questions being omitted or altered depending on the context of each interview. WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 15 As this interview schedule has not previously been used, a pilot study was conducted with one participant to ensure that data relevant to the research question was obtained. The pilot study was successful, and the data obtained was included for analysis. All interviews were transcribed verbatim for analysis. Study Procedure After potential participants demonstrated an interest in participating via email, they were forwarded the relevant details, such as an in-depth information sheet (See Appendix B) and consent form (See Appendix C). Interviews were then arranged via email, at a time and place of the participants’ convenience. Three interviews were held in a private room in the National College of Ireland, while the other seven were arranged at alternative, suitable locations. Upon meeting, each participant was briefed with reference to the information sheet and given the opportunity to ask any questions. Participants were then asked to read through the consent form provided and to answer the two demographic questions, age and gender, followed by signing if they gave their informed consent to partake in the interview. Once informed consent was obtained, the interviews proceeded. The interview schedule was used to facilitate the interviews but based on the nature of the interaction and the semi- structured approach, a flexible approach was used in terms of the sequence and adaptation of questions. Interviews were audio recorded via recording and transcription applications on two mobile phones until the end of the interview. The interviews ranged in time from 11-43 minutes (M = 25), excluding the time spent on briefing and debriefing participants. This large time range was due to some participants not having as much to say about their experience, i.e. their self- concept was not as affected as some of the other participants. WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 16 Participants were fully debriefed after the interview, which included verbal acknowledgement of their participation, a recap of the aims of the interview and their rights with regard to withdrawal and access to data, further reassurance of their anonymity and confidentiality, providing the opportunity to ask questions, and providing them with relevant contact details of support forums/helplines in a printed debrief form (See Appendix D). Ethical Considerations The current study adhered to the ethical guidelines provided by the Psychological Society of Ireland and the National College of Ireland. Ethical approval for this research was granted by the National College of Ireland’s Psychology Department’s Undergraduate Ethics Committee. Informed consent was obtained to ensure beneficence and to protect participants. The purpose and nature of the research was made completely transparent to participants at the recruitment and data collection stage and it was ensured that all participants fully understood what their participation would involve. Additionally, participants were informed of their right to withdraw consent and their right to access their data under Freedom of Information legislation, which is also outlined in the information sheet, consent form and debriefing sheet. To safeguard anonymity and confidentiality, any potentially identifiable information was omitted from the data upon transcription, and audio recordings were immediately destroyed after this process. These transcripts were stored on a personal computer to which only the researcher had access. These documents were password-protected and stored under a unique participant number that was assigned to each participant to protect their identity. As the study explores participants’ subjective experiences, the topic of menopause may be sensitive to some. The risk of emotional distress during the interview process was minimised by restating the participants’ right to withdraw consent of participation at any point. Some WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 17 participants did become emotional during the interviews; these participants were offered breaks and given the opportunity to finish the interview if they wished to do so. However, all participants were happy to continue. A full debrief, as previously mentioned, was carried out with each participant. Data Analysis As this is a qualitative piece of research, it is essential to acknowledge that the beliefs and assumptions of the researcher can influence interpretation of data. With this in mind, it should be noted that the researcher was interested in studying self-concept within menopausal women due to the impact the experience had on some family members. It was apparent that some women found the transition extremely unsettling and demonstrated a notable change in their self- concept, while others found that it was a relatively easy and non-impactful experience. Therefore, the interviews were designed in a way that allowed for the flexible exploration of women’s self-concept during this phase of life. Data Analysis Procedure Once all the data was transcribed to text from the audio tapes, an inductive thematic analysis was conducted. This is a process of identifying, analysing and reporting patterns/themes within the data. As this type of analysis is independent of theory and epistemology (Braun & Clarke, 2006), it fits well with the social constructivist approach which argues that knowledge is subjective and consists of our own representations of reality (Burr, 2003). Rather than testing theory, this research sought to generate data from which a greater understanding of the research topic might arise. This inductive approach allows for an analysis that is data-driven. Themes were primarily identified at a semantic level, with some allowance for analysis beyond the surface of the data, i.e. underlying ideas or assumptions. The theoretical freedom of thematic WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 18 analysis allowed the researcher to adopt an essentialist approach, reporting experiences, meanings and the realities of participants. Due to the subjective nature of the research, this type of analysis is well-suited. The data was analysed with adherence to Braun and Clarke’s (2006) six phases of thematic analysis. To begin, the individual transcripts were read repeatedly to increase familiarity and to begin searching for patterns within the data. Codes were then produced manually by writing notes and highlighting patterns on the printed transcripts to identify interesting features of the data and to sort them into meaningful groups. Next, the groups of codes were organized into possible themes and sub-themes, with each theme capturing something important relating to the research question. These groups were continuously revised and refined, which involved combining and altering themes where needed, to warrant coherent distinctions between themes. An initial thematic map was then produced manually (See Appendix E), in which themes were defined; ensuring that they captured the essence of each concept and the reason why they are an interesting feature of the data. The individual themes were then finalised with regard to all other themes, ensuring that there is a comprehensible ‘story’ for each that fits the overall narrative of the data. Results During the analysis of the interview transcripts, four key themes captured the essence of the data: (i) Loss of identity, womanhood and control, (ii) Negative changes in self-concept, (iii) Impact of menopause and self-concept on quality of life, (iv) Positive changes in self-concept; a time for self-compassion and self-acceptance. See Appendix E for an illustrative map of these themes and the emerging ideas within them. WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 19 Loss of identity, womanhood and control “I'm losing my womanhood, I'm losing my fertility, I'm losing everything.” (P1) Women’s identity and sense of control appeared to be very impacted during their transition to menopause. Various complex elements comprise this theme, including significant changes to self-image and identity, the impacts of loss of fertility and loss of womanhood, a sense of remorse upon ageing, and an overall feeling of loss of control. Many participants described feeling that they had lost who they were before their menopausal transition: “You're not who you used to be. So, you're losing that self-identity, your own identity.” (P1). Many women described significant changes to their self-concept and identity: “I just became pretty much like a shell, like a shell of myself (...) I was nearly forcing myself to be human.” (P6) Participant 1 also felt like others didn’t view her as a person anymore and described a new feeling of invisibility: “I just felt I was invisible. I just felt like I was a nobody.” (P1). This loss of identity was captured in the way many women spoke about being “back to” themselves at the end of perimenopause/reaching menopause: “I'm back to my old self again.” (P4) Significant changes in identity can also be seen in women who described themselves before and after their use of HRT. When Participant 6 began using HRT, she described herself as being “restored”: I took a chance on a doctor, a very expensive doctor. And he listened to me and said to me, you're not mad, you need hormones. That was it, I haven't gone back since. And [name in third person] as we know her and always was, was back (...) it's like as if I’d just been reset. WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 20 When asked how she viewed herself before her menopausal transition, her reply was: A perfectly normal human being, like I probably am now - I don't know if I come across as normal. I was active, I was busy, I was always really good at my job, I was articulate, I loved to have a laugh, I never stopped talking. I'm back to that now. This clearly demonstrates the large impact that menopause has had on this participant’s identity, as her self-image before menopause was completely different to her self-image during her menopausal transition. A large part of the impact on women’s identity was the feeling of losing their womanhood. Participant 1 in particular described intense feelings of loss surrounding her womanhood: And obviously, the way you think in your head about who you are, you don't rate yourself as a person or as a woman anymore (…) I felt as a woman, I was losing being a woman, basically, if I was losing my periods and I was losing all of that end of things. This participant also felt apprehensive when speaking to men about menopause for fear that they would view her as “less of a woman.” Similarly, Participant 3 described feeling more like a man during her transition: WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 21 There are days I felt like I was turning into a man like, you know. Cos I’m putting on weight, I’m cross, sometimes I’m grumpy and can’t tolerate the child (…) I felt like I was turning into a man. Participant 5 described the loss of fertility experienced with menopause as having a significant impact on them: I think there was a grief, there's a grieving process that I think I went through. Losing my fertility, I can't have any more kids, and feeling like you're just fading into the background that you're not young and vibrant anymore - I mean there is that fear of aging. And when you don't get your period, you go right that’s it, I'm moving on to- it's a different phase. This participant described the loss of her fertility as the biggest impact of menopause for her, particularly because she “had such a hard time having kids” previously. By contrast, the majority of participants failed to mention this aspect of the transition or described the loss of their periods as being non-impactful. For example, Participant 8 stated that she was not impacted by the loss of her fertility: I know people, you know, kind of nearly mourn it because it’s the end of their childbearing years, but I wasn't having any more children anyways. So, I just looked at it as being rid of a nuisance basically. WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 22 Other participants said things like “the best thing was to get rid of it” (P9) and that “it’s going to happen whether you stress and worry or not” (P10), highlighting their indifference to this change. Accompanying these effects on women’s self-concept was an overriding feeling of loss of control. Some participants described a lack of control over intrusive thoughts and intense mood swings: “I knew they were irrational, but I couldn’t stop them.” (P1). However, it seems that the lack of control is mostly described in terms of the overall experience of menopause itself, with some participants describing the feeling of being “trapped,” highlighting their passive role in the transition. A link can be seen between the feelings of loss of control and the view taken by some participants that menopause is a marker of age: “The most important part of my life was gone was done and I was, in a sense, not in control of my life anymore.” (P1) Some participants described menopause as a period of “decay”, “decline” or a “natural progression to death”, which evidently impacted their self-concept: “People used to say to me, ‘ah no you're too young.’ I still think that I'm very young, you know what I mean? And I'm not probably old enough to be going through the menopause. That impacted me.” (P2) Many other participants noted the impact that their “young” age had on their experience and self-concept: I think my age, full stop, has been the trickiest part of this whole thing, including the doctors not listening because of my age. If I had have walked into any doctor at age 49/50 and said I'm having hot flushes at night, straight away they’d know what it was. 37/38 - no you're mad, have an anti-anxiety tablet. WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 23 Although most participants made this association between menopause and ageing, some did not share this view: “I don’t look at it as getting old because, I'm just me. I’m not different.” (P8). The lack of control over menopause and ageing in this case did not impact their self-concept. Negative self-appraisal “My mental thoughts were hugely affected by it, as much, if not more a lot of the time, than the physical symptoms.” (P1) The data illustrated a predominantly negative impact of the menopause on women’s self- concept. This included negative descriptions of self-image and body-image, low self-esteem and confidence, shame and preoccupation with others’ opinions. Almost all participants described themselves in negative terms at some point during the interviews. The language participants used to describe themselves was striking and consistent. Some frequently used descriptions include: “crazy”, “headcase”, “wired”, “raving lunatic”, “going off my head”, “losing my marbles”, and “losing my mind.” Most participants described this sense of “craziness” as being a part of the transition: “There's a certain madness that seems to come along with menopause.” (P7) It had a significant impact on some participants: “I believed that I had some crazy psychiatric thing and that I was done. I was going to end up locked up in an asylum like that's what I genuinely believed. I constantly doubted myself.” (P6) Feelings of hopelessness and worthlessness were also shared by some participants, particularly for Participant 6 who was very negatively impacted by the experience: I was suicidal at one point, probably for most of it (…) there was no reason whatsoever to live, because every moment of every day was pure agony physically and mentally. The WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 24 only peace I ever got was when I was asleep (…) I still don't really get my head around how I'm still here or why did I hang on? (P6) These feelings of worthlessness were also experienced by Participant 1, who had thoughts of, “What's the point of being here? Nobody really needs me anyway.” She explained that she suffered from “a depression” when she started going through menopause. Other participants felt feelings of worthlessness at a less extreme level, describing that they felt like a “failure” due to their inability to carry out every-day tasks as a result of tiredness. Many participants provided an insight into their body-image during this phase, with the majority describing their appearance as undesirable. The largest impact of body-image on women’s self-concept appeared to be weight gain, with women describing their experiences of not being able to lose weight in this phase of their life as “disheartening,” and that it affected their confidence. Some women’s body-image concerns were not related to their weight, particularly those who reported having recently lost weight. However, these participants were more concerned with other physical changes to their hair, skin, etc.: “I didn't like the changes physically in me of getting older. And menopause has a lot to do with that as well. And it just has a huge mental impact.” (P1) Some participants described the negative self-talk that they experienced: “It can be raging like, you know, the self-talk, the self-critique. You know, god your hair, your face, your skin, your body's falling apart. You know, ‘ugh’, that that sense of ‘UGH’.” (P5) The aforementioned feeling of loss of womanhood was also seen in the way women spoke about their appearance: “Someone said to me the other day, ‘Have you got hair on your face?,’ and I’m like, I’m totally turning into a man.” (P3) Interestingly, women who had previous issues with their bodies did not seem to be affected in this regard when going through menopause: WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 25 “Sure I never would have been really, body-confident anyway so I don't think it's any worse than it was before.” (P10) These negative descriptions of themselves came hand in hand with low self-esteem and confidence, embarrassment, shame, and a preoccupation with other people’s opinions. Some participants reported feelings of embarrassment and shame due to their experience of menopause: And I suppose again, it's a bit of a shame in yourself, you're a bit shameful or, you know, you feel shame that you're going through it. Why should you feel shame for something that happens naturally to every single woman? But I think there is a level of shame attached to it. (P1) Embarrassment was experienced in the workplace by some participants who described the experience of hot flashes: I had day sweats where I'd be in a meeting or whatever and this sweat would just start pouring down my face and people would think I was going to get sick, and that started to become embarrassing (…) they're looking and you can see them looking at the beads of sweat, so that doesn't do your self-confidence any good, or to be constantly feeling that you have to have a shower. (P10) Participant 1 in particular described herself as a very confident person before her menopausal transition, so this loss of confidence was something that was new to her. Other WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 26 participants also mentioned that they just “weren’t happy” with themselves or “didn’t like” themselves during their transition. This also resulted in women ruminating over other’s opinions: “And I remember thinking to myself, I know they're looking at me thinking I'm off my head and I even think I'm off my head so why wouldn't they think I'm off my head.” (P1) Most participants said that they would only speak to close friends about certain aspects of menopause, mainly the “mental aspect”, for fear of judgement by others. Participant 3 even commented saying that it’s best to explain to people what is going on, otherwise “they’re thinking you definitely have lost it.” On the other hand, many participants said that they did not care much about others’ opinions: “I wouldn’t really mind how other people see me, that wouldn’t bother me.” (P2) This highlights the striking individual differences in women’s experiences and self-concept. Negative impact of menopause and self-concept on quality of life “I had no quality of life.” (P1) The experience of menopause and its impact on the participants’ self-concept was made apparent in the way they spoke about its effect on different aspects of their lives. Some participants withdrew and isolated themselves, missed out on opportunities, resorted to alcohol as a coping mechanism, and spoke about the impact on family, relationships and work. Many participants mentioned that they began to isolate themselves during this phase of their life due to the impact of physical symptoms (e.g. “If I knew that it was going to be very warm somewhere, I would probably choose not to go.” (P1)) and due to their own wish to be alone: I did distance myself from certain situations and going to certain places, and maybe not necessarily over the physical end of it, but possibly more in my own head I just didn't WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 27 want to be with other people. (…) I can remember making conscious calls and excuses of why not to go to places and why it'd be better to stay at home. (P1) Other women explained that they didn’t feel like they were “good company” because they were feeling “down” and therefore “didn’t want to be mixing with people.” (P3) As a result, some participants mentioned that they missed out on certain opportunities and life events, like Participant 6 who described herself as having “missed out on really good years”: I missed out on four years of my life. I didn't go out. I functioned, sort of. I went to work because I had to and that was it like I’d no social life, I’d no nothing. All I ever wanted was the bed. This participant started resorting to alcohol in order to “function,” saying she “was held together by a bottle of white wine” to get her through important family events. Another participant, who said she just wanted to “keep away from people” described herself as using alcohol as a reward to make her feel comfortable: “I think it was just my comfort zone at the time, and it helped me through.” (P7) However, she reveals that she “could have gone down a very slippery slope of drinking a lot.” These factors appeared to impact on women’s family life. Most participants expressed that their families “got the brunt of” the impact of the menopause. Intense feelings of guilt could be seen, particularly in Participant 1 and Participant 6, who became upset when talking about the impact of the experience on their family: WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 28 I think if you were to ask my family what I was like to live with back then they would probably turn around and say you were a nightmare. And it probably was a nightmare and it probably was horrible for them. But you can't turn back the clock, you can only apologize and say I wasn't in my right mind or- [becomes visibly upset] (P1) I feel the biggest impact for me would have been my daughter. It was always the guilt. Always a huge guilt. I always found it so hard. And also, because of what was going on I had no idea, I really didn't know what was wrong with me (…) I didn't have any confirmation from any doctors and a part of me believed I was very ill and dying. And that was the hardest part, I remember I used to put her to bed at night and I’d just feel so sad because I didn't know if I was going to wake up the next morning. And it was hard for her, cos I remember one time her asking, ‘Is mammy going to die?’ [becomes visibly upset] (P6) Relationships were also impacted by menopause and its impact on women’s self-concept for some participants. Participant 3 described their partner as viewing them as a “nuisance”, while Participant 7 explained how herself and her husband almost split up due to large arguments which she attributes to the menopause, as well as finding his lack of support quite difficult to accept: “I actually can't relate to my husband and say to him, ‘I don't feel good today,’ because he can't handle it. So, I found it really difficult because I tried to talk to him.” (P7) Some participants also spoke about how the symptoms of menopause and their lack of confidence impacted their work and relationships with colleagues. Participant 1 described that she feels her colleagues are still “on eggshells” with her because of the way she was before WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 29 taking HRT and that this has knocked her confidence. Similarly, Participant 10 explained how her experience of hot flushes makes it “hard to concentrate” in meetings and affects her “performance” at work. However, Participant 5 described a new “drive” within her to focus on her work: “I feel like, oh God, I’m running out of time here I need to- I need to get the work done, I need to get my work done. So that has been a big change. I'm very motivated.” In this way, she found that her experience of menopause reflected positively on her work as an artist. Positive changes in self-concept; a time for self-compassion and self-acceptance “I look at it as a positive thing, not as a negative.” (P8) Although the majority of participants acknowledged the negative impacts of their menopause experience, a smaller number of participants demonstrated that their experience of menopause has had a positive impact on their self-concept, including things like a more positive self-image and body-image, greater self-esteem, and a newfound sense of resilience, self- acceptance and self-compassion. This theme was captured primarily from Participant 5 and Participant 8’s experience. Participant 8 explained that she had a horrific experience with menstruation all her life which resulted in many undesirable symptoms alongside low moods and low self-esteem. For her, menopause has been an ultimately positive experience: “But all of that went. It seemed like it just disappeared when I hit menopause.” She described feeling “happier in herself” upon reaching menopause and explained that there is a new “lightness” about her. It should also be noted that this participant did not make an association between menopause and age: “I don’t look at it as getting old because I'm just me. I’m not different.” Participant 5 experienced positive changes in her body-image. She describes that she now accepts her curly hair which she hated for most of her life and doesn’t feel the need to wear WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 30 makeup anymore which she used to “mask” herself with: “That's something that's changed for me. And I think it is menopause that has done that for me. I’ve become more accepting of myself.” She does not deny that she experiences negative self-talk like the majority of women, but she explains that she is able to “rationalize” it: You do feel all those things. But I think my brain and myself have decided it's just a whole load of nonsense, it really is. So yeah, I wouldn't say I have more confidence. But I don't have less. I think I'm more accepting of this is the way I am now. She described this self-acceptance as a new “resilience” that she hadn’t experienced before. With this self-acceptance came a co-existing sense of “self-compassion,” as described by Participant 5. She spoke of how this transition has made her “more protective of (her) tenderness” and “gentler” on herself. She explained what she meant by this: I'm saying no a lot more. Yeah, my self-care has risen and my behaviour has changed. There are days when I go; I’m not putting on makeup today. I'm not going out. I'm not doing it. I’m taking care of me. I'm watching a movie. I'm going out with my daughter. Me first. Yeah, because you can feel kind of ‘bleh’, you feel old, you feel whatever. So yeah, my behaviour has changed, but it's been in a more positive way. She talks of how she views menopause as a positive opportunity for “self-reflection” and “claiming back” her “me time,” particularly since her children are older now: WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 31 Up to this we've been so busy. You're busy, busy, busy work, work, work. And this is kind of a slap in the face, where you have to stop and slow down and think. And yeah, you start realizing how valuable your family is and how valuable you are, and you’ve worked so hard all your life now you need to give yourself a break. Don’t be so hard on yourself. Thus, it can be seen that for some women, this experience has positively impacted their self-concept and has proven to be quite a positive experience. Discussion The aim of this research was to explore Irish women’s experience of the menopausal transition and to understand if and how their experience has impacted their self-concept. Upon analysing the interview transcripts, four key themes were constructed from the data: (i) Loss of identity, womanhood and control, (ii) Negative self-appraisal, (iii) Impact of menopause and self-concept on quality of life, (iv) Positive changes in self-concept; a time for self-compassion and self-acceptance. In the current study, most women described a predominantly negative self-concept during this phase. However, some women experienced positive changes in their self-concept, while others described themselves as not being very impacted by the transition at all. For those whose self-concept was negatively impacted, they described large changes in their self-image and identity such as having lost themselves, their fertility, their womanhood, and their control. Similarly, they provide negative descriptions of themselves and their bodies, which subsequently impacted their self-esteem and confidence in various contexts, resulting in shame and embarrassment. Family, work, and relationships were mostly impacted by these changes which often led to guilt, as well as women’s quality of life being compromised due to isolating WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 32 themselves and some using alcohol as a coping mechanism. A few participants were also impacted by depression and some experienced suicidal thoughts during this time. On the other end of the spectrum, some participants were not impacted by the aforementioned issues, and some even experienced a positive change in their self-concept. For these women, greater moods and self-esteem came with the freedom from troublesome menstruation, while others used their new-found resilience to strive for more self-acceptance and self-compassion during a time which they deemed to be about focusing more on themselves. Consistent with Beyene (1986) and Deeks’ (2003) ideas that menopause is not solely a hormonal event and the context of a woman’s life is crucial in understanding one’s experience of menopause, it is clear that various psychosocial events adjacent to menopause had an impact on participants’ self-concept in this study. For example, the impact of loss of fertility on a participant who had previous difficulties having children, was quite different to that of the improved mood and self-esteem for a participant who experienced great difficulty with menstruation all of her life. It appears that no two women experience menopause in the same way. Although self-concept in menopausal women has been investigated by very few researchers, some aspects of the themes identified can be seen in previous literature relating to women’s experience of menopause. For example, most participants mentioned the impact that menopause and self-concept had on their relationships, family and work, which has previously been reported (Parish et al., 2019; Hvas & Gannik, 2008). Similarly, it could be seen within the data that attitudes towards menopause varied for women at different stages of the transition, which is consistent with previous literature (Brown et al., 2017; Busch et al., 2003). Overlapping ideas could be seen between the current findings and the themes within the systematic review WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 33 conducted by Hoga et al. (2015); particularly the concept that women perceive menopause as a time of gains and losses, that the physical and emotional changes of menopause strongly affect them, and that resilience and coping strategies are improved to enhance wellbeing. With regards to gains and losses, it appeared within the current study that very few women acknowledged both within their experience; most women were concerned primarily with either the gains or the losses associated with menopause. It is also clear from some of the heart-breaking descriptions from participants that the changes of menopause strongly affected them, to the point of suicidal ideation for some. They were also strongly affected by their body-image, which most women in the current study described with negative terms, which is consistent with similar studies (e.g. Deeks & McCabe, 2001; Walter, 2000). Resilience within the current study was used in a positive way, however, the coping mechanisms mentioned (e.g. isolation and using alcohol) were maladaptive, and therefore not used to enhance wellbeing. Some of the discourses highlighted in Hvas and Gannik’s (2008) study could also be seen in the way women spoke about their experience. The biomedical and forever young discourse could be seen in the way many participants primarily associated menopause with physiological symptoms, ageing and decline throughout the course of the interviews. All ten participants mentioned doctors, HRT and age at some point during the interviews, either from a positive or negative viewpoint. The alternative and existential discourse was also observed in some participants, who were more likely to describe menopause as a natural and positive process full of opportunity for self-reflection and personal growth. By contrast to Carolan’s (2000) findings which highlighted that the rural Irish women in their sample had a positive experience of menopause, the participants in this study experienced a loss of identity, womanhood and control, negative self-appraisal and negative impacts on their WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 34 quality of life in addition to some positive changes in their self-concept. Little inferences can be made due to the lag between the two studies and the fact that their sample only included rural Irish women; however, the current findings greatly contribute to the limited research on the experience of menopause within Irish populations. Findings which have suggested that a positive self-concept predicts greater life satisfaction, fewer physiological symptoms and less psychological distress during menopause (Castiglione et al., 2015; Martínez et al., 2012; Shu et al., 2007) are reflected within the current study, as those who described a more positive self-concept talked about fewer symptoms and less distress during their experience of menopause. Consistent with Svenson’s (2005) findings, the physical and emotional disruption of menopause also affected participants’ sense of self and self- identity within the current study. The current study builds on this, and significantly adds to the limited research surrounding women’s self-concept during menopause, particularly from a qualitative approach. It has been suggested that changes in self-concept during adolescence reflect a u-shaped curve, with gradual increases in stability over time due to their sense of self becoming more integrated and consistent (Harter, 1988). These self-perceptions have been found to be influenced by biological (e.g. puberty) and cognitive factors, school transitions, etc. (Eccles et al., 1993). If it is known that self-concept develops and changes throughout the lifespan (O’Brien, 1980; Pasquali, 1999), there is no excuse for the lack of research into this construct during one of the biggest biopsychological transitions in a woman’s life. Self-concept clarity has been related to subjective well-being (Campbell et al., 1996; De Cremer & Sedikides, 2005; Lavallee & Campbell, 1995; Slotter et al., 2010) and depression (Avis & McKinlay, 1991; Kaufert et al., 1992), while positive self-concept dimensions have been associated with greater life satisfaction WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 35 (Martínez et al., 2012), fewer psychological and physiological menopause symptoms (Shu et al., 2007) and better adaptation to menopausal changes (Castiglione et al., 2015). Therefore, as noted by Guérin et al. (2017), more focus on women’s self-concept may allow for a healthier psychological adjustment during this period. Strengths and Limitations One major strength of this study was the population that was investigated, as Carolan (2000) had outlined the lack of research surrounding Irish women’s experience of menopause. The research also addressed an apparent gap within the literature; the investigation of women’s self-concept during menopause using a qualitative approach. As qualitative studies look at individual experiences, the current study adds to the qualitative evidence, which provides a very different insight to quantitative research. The qualitative methodology employed allowed for an exploratory design and the use of thematic analysis in particular allowed for a non-rigid analysis and interpretation of data. The use of one-to-one interviews were also beneficial as some of the content that was discussed was quite emotional; these insights into women’s experience may not have been obtained from the likes of focus groups. However, some limitations of the study warrant mention. It should be noted that the sampling strategy may have led to some bias within the findings, as it can be assumed that those who were recruited within the menopause support groups were seeking support due to difficulties encountered with their experience. Although the data provide a rich insight to the experience of menopause for these 10 women, generalization to the larger population of Irish women is limited. Data was not collected on whether participants were in receipt of HRT, or had been suffering with comorbid psychiatric disorders, which may have impacted women’s self-concept. Although all women within the sample met the inclusion criteria of experiencing menopausal WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 36 symptoms in the previous two years, data was not collected on the exact stage of the transition they were at, i.e. perimenopause or post-menopause, which may account for some variance within the data. Implications and Future Research The current findings highlight that every woman’s experience of menopause is different. Along with the physical and psychological symptoms, women may experience negative changes in their self-concept during menopause, including concerns with their changing identity, negative self-appraisals, low self-esteem, etc., which may in turn impact on their quality of life and other aspects of their lives such as family, relationships and work. By contrast, some women can experience positive changes in their self-concept, or will not be impacted by the menopausal transition at all. These findings should inform health care practitioners in order to maximize support for women during this developmental transition. Health care needs to be personal and tailored to the individual needs, preferences and expectations of women, with due regard to social and cultural contexts. Coping strategies should be developed to enable women who are struggling to manage the psychological impact of menopause. The psychological implications of the menopausal transition should not be neglected, as it is clear that menopause is experienced differently by every woman. The current study is a good foundation for which further research is needed. Such studies might explore self-concept between distinct stages of the menopause transition; for example, investigate self-concept within premenopausal, perimenopausal and postmenopausal women, to see which groups may be most at risk of these negative implications. Some longitudinal research might be necessary to investigate the direction of the relationship; the experience of menopause WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 37 may impact self-concept, but pre-existing self-concept might also impact psychological adjustment during menopause. In conclusion, the current study contributes to both the limited literature surrounding Irish women’s experience of menopause, and the lack of studies which have investigated self- concept in menopausal women, particularly using qualitative methodology. Four key themes captured the essence of the data: (i) Loss of identity, womanhood and control, (ii) Negative self- appraisal, (iii) Impact of menopause and self-concept on quality of life, (iv) Positive changes in self-concept; a time for self-compassion and self-acceptance. 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WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 49 Appendices Appendix A Interview Schedule Research Question: How do women describe their self-concept during their experience of natural menopause? (The aim of this interview is to understand your ‘self-concept’ at this stage of your life. This includes your self-image (how you view yourself/identity), self-esteem (the extent to which you value yourself), perhaps body image, and how these perceptions may or may not impact your experience of menopause.) A. Introductory questions - Experiences 1. How has your experience of menopause been so far? 2. Is this experience different to what you anticipated or had previously learned? B. Self-image/identity 1. How do you view yourself in this new stage of your life? 2. Is this view different or the same as before you knew you were experiencing menopause? 3. In what way do you think others view you, knowing that you have reached menopause? (friends, family, partner, acquaintances) 4. How do you view other women experiencing menopause? C. Self-esteem 1. How do you feel about the image of yourself that you described? Are you happy with it? 2. Is this feeling different or the same as before you knew you were experiencing menopause? D. Impact of self-concept 1. Do these feelings/concepts of yourself impact your behaviour? 2. Do these feelings/concepts impact any other aspects of your life? (e.g. work, relationships, children…) E. Closing questions 1. Is there anything that has influenced your self-concept? 2. Is there anything that could change your self-concept? 3. As a woman living in Ireland, how do you feel women experiencing the menopausal transition are viewed in our society? 4. Has there been any particular cultural influences that have affected you? 5. Is there anything else that you would like to talk about with regards to the menopausal transition that perhaps I have not mentioned? PROBES:  Could you tell me a little more about that?  Could you tell me about a particular time that you experienced this/felt this way? WOMEN’S SELF-CONCEPT DURING MENOPAUSE 50 Appendix B Participant Information Sheet Study Title: A Qualitative Study of Women’s Self-Concept During Menopause What is the purpose of the study? The aim of this study is to explore women’s self-concept during their menopausal transition, in an effort to identify potential patterns or themes shared by women/differentiating women during this phase of life. This includes questions about self-image, identity, self-esteem, etc., which is essentially how you think and feel about yourself at this stage of your life. There is a lack of research in this area, particularly in Ireland, which is why this is the topic of interest. Ultimately, this will lead to a greater understanding of women’s experiences, and a greater opportunity for future interventions that could potentially improve women’s self-concept during the menopausal transition. Can you take part in this study? For the purpose
Full Terms & Conditions of access and use can be found at http://www.tandfonline.com/action/journalInformation?journalCode=uqrp20 Qualitative Research in Psychology ISSN: 1478-0887 (Print) 1478-0895 (Online) Journal homepage: http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/uqrp20 Using thematic analysis in psychology Virginia Braun & Victoria Clarke To cite this article: Virginia Braun & Victoria Clarke (2006) Using thematic analysis in psychology, Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3:2, 77-101 To link to this article: https://doi.org/10.1191/1478088706qp063oa Published online: 21 Jul 2008. Submit your article to this journal Article views: 174409 Citing articles: 21805 View citing articles http://www.tandfonline.com/action/journalInformation?journalCode=uqrp20 http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/uqrp20 https://doi.org/10.1191/1478088706qp063oa http://www.tandfonline.com/action/authorSubmission?journalCode=uqrp20&show=instructions http://www.tandfonline.com/action/authorSubmission?journalCode=uqrp20&show=instructions http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/citedby/10.1191/1478088706qp063oa#tabModule http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/citedby/10.1191/1478088706qp063oa#tabModule Using thematic analysis in psychology Virginia Braun1 and Victoria Clarke2 1University of Auckland and 2University of the West of England Thematic analysis is a poorly demarcated, rarely acknowledged, yet widely used qualitative analytic method within psychology. In this paper, we argue that it offers an accessible and theoretically flexible approach to analysing qualitative data. We outline what thematic analysis is, locating it in relation to other qualitative analytic methods that search for themes or patterns, and in relation to different epistemological and ontological positions. We then provide clear guidelines to those wanting to start thematic analysis, or conduct it in a more deliberate and rigorous way, and consider potential pitfalls in conducting thematic analysis. Finally, we outline the disadvantages and advantages of thematic analysis. We conclude by advocating thematic analysis as a useful and flexible method for qualitative research in and beyond psychology. Qualitative Research in Psychology 2006; 3: 77�/101 Key words: epistemology; flexibility; patterns; qualitative psychology; thematic analysis Thematic analysis is a poorly demarcated and rarely acknowledged, yet widely used qualitative analytic method (Boyatzis, 1998; Roulston, 2001) within and beyond psychology. In this paper, we aim to fill what we, as researchers and teachers in qualitative psychology, have experienced as a current gap �/ the absence of a paper which adequately outlines the theory, ap- plication and evaluation of thematic ana- lysis, and one which does so in a way accessible to students and those not parti- cularly familiar with qualitative research.1 That is, we aim to write a paper that will be useful as both a teaching and research tool in qualitative psychology. Therefore, in this paper we discuss theory and method for thematic analysis, and clarify Correspondence: Virginia Braun, Department of Psychology, University of Auckland, Private Bag 92019, Auckland, New Zealand. E-mail: v.braun@auckland.ac.nz # 2006 Edward Arnold (Publishers) Ltd 10.1191/1478088706qp063oa Qualitative Research in Psychology 2006; 3: 77�/101www.QualResearchPsych.com the similarities and differences between different approaches that share features in common with a thematic approach. Qualitative approaches are incredibly diverse, complex and nuanced (Holloway and Todres, 2003), and thematic analysis should be seen as a foundational method for qualitative analysis. It is the first qualitative method of analysis that re- searchers should learn, as it provides core skills that will be useful for conducting many other forms of qualitative analysis. Indeed, Holloway and Todres (2003: 347) identify ‘thematizing meanings’ as one of a few shared generic skills across qualitative analysis.2 For this reason, Boyatzis (1998) characterizes it, not as a specific method, but as a tool to use across different meth- ods. Similarly, Ryan and Bernard (2000) locate thematic coding as a process per- formed within ‘major’ analytic traditions (such as grounded theory), rather than a specific approach in its own right. We argue thematic analysis should be consid- ered a method in its own right. One of the benefits of thematic analysis is its flexibility. Qualitative analytic methods can be roughly divided into two camps. Within the first, there are those tied to, or stemming from, a particular theoretical or epistemological position. For some of these �/ such as conversation analysis (CA; eg, Hutchby and Wooffitt, 1998) and interpre- tative phenomenological analysis (IPA; eg, Smith and Osborn, 2003) �/ there is (as yet) relatively limited variability in how the method is applied, within that framework. In essence, one recipe guides analysis. For others of these �/ such as grounded theory (Glaser, 1992; Strauss and Corbin, 1998), discourse analysis (DA; eg, Burman and Parker, 1993; Potter and Wetherell, 1987; Willig, 2003) or narrative analysis (Murray, 2003; Riessman, 1993) �/ there are different manifestations of the method, from within the broad theoretical framework. Second, there are methods that are essentially in- dependent of theory and epistemology, and can be applied across a range of theoretical and epistemological approaches. Although often (implicitly) framed as a realist/experi- ential method (Aronson, 1994; Roulston, 2001), thematic analysis is actually firmly in the second camp, and is compatible with both essentialist and constructionist para- digms within psychology (we discuss this later). Through its theoretical freedom, the- matic analysis provides a flexible and use- ful research tool, which can potentially provide a rich and detailed, yet complex, account of data. Given the advantages of the flexibility of thematic analysis, it is important that we are clear that we are not trying to limit this flexibility. However, an absence of clear and concise guidelines around thematic analysis means that the ‘anything goes’ critique of qualitative research (Antaki et al ., 2002) may well apply in some instances. With this paper, we hope to strike a balance between demarcating thematic analysis clearly �/ ie, explaining what it is, and how to do it �/ and ensuring flexibility in relation to how it is used, so that it does not become limited and constrained, and lose one of its key advan- tages. Indeed, a clear demarcation of this method will be useful to ensure that those who use thematic analysis can make active choices about the particular form of analysis they are engaged in. Therefore, this paper seeks to celebrate the flexibility of the method and provide a vocabulary and ‘recipe’ for people to undertake thematic analysis in a way that is theoretically and methodologically sound.3 As we will show, what is important is that as well as apply- ing a method to data, researchers make their (epistemological and other) assump- 78 V Braun and V Clarke tions explicit (Holloway and Todres, 2003). Qualitative psychologists need to be clear about what they are doing and why, and to include the often-omitted ‘how’ they did their analysis in their reports (Attride- Stirling, 2001). In this paper we outline: what thematic analysis is; a 6-phase guide to performing thematic analysis; potential pitfalls to avoid when doing thematic analysis; what makes good thematic analysis; and advan- tages and disadvantages of thematic analy- sis. Throughout, we provide exam- ples from the research literature, and our own research. By providing examples, we show the types of research questions and topics that thematic analysis can be used to study. Before we begin, we need to define a few of the terms used throughout the paper. Data corpus refers to all data collected for a particular research project, while data set refers to all the data from the corpus that are being used for a particular analysis. There are two main ways of choosing the data set (which approach you take depends on whether you are coming to the data with a specific question or not �/ see ‘A number of decisions’ below). First, the data set may consist of many, or all, individual data items within your data corpus. So, for example, in a project on female genital cosmetic surgery, Virginia’s data corpus consists of interviews with surgeons, media items on the topic, and surgeon websites. For any particular analysis, her data set might just be the surgeon inter- views, just the websites (Braun, 2005b), or it might combine surgeon data with some media data (eg, Braun, 2005a). Second, the data set might be identified by a particular analytic interest in some topic in the data, and the data set then becomes all instances in the corpus where that topic is referred. So in Virginia’s example, if she was inter- ested in how ‘sexual pleasure’ was talked about, her data set would consist of all instances across the entire data corpus that had some relevance to sexual pleasure. These two approaches might sometimes be combined to produce the data set. Data item is used to refer to each individual piece of data collected, which together make up the data set or corpus. A data item in this instance would be an indivi- dual surgeon interview, a television docu- mentary, or one particular website. Finally, data extract refers to an individual coded chunk of data, which has been identified within, and extracted from, a data item. There will be many of these, taken from throughout the entire data set, and only a selection of these extracts will feature in the final analysis. What is thematic analysis? Thematic analysis is a method for identify- ing, analysing and reporting patterns (themes) within data. It minimally orga- nizes and describes your data set in (rich) detail. However, frequently if goes further than this, and interprets various aspects of the research topic (Boyatzis, 1998). The range of different possible thematic ana- lyses will further be highlighted in relation to a number of decisions regarding it as a method (see below). Thematic analysis is widely used, but there is no clear agreement about what thematic analysis is and how you go about doing it (see Attride-Stirling, 2001; Boyat- zis, 1998; Tuckett, 2005, for other exam- ples). It can be seen as a very poorly ‘branded’ method, in that it does not appear to exist as a ‘named’ analysis in the same way that other methods do (eg, narrative Using thematic analysis in psychology 79 analysis, grounded theory). In this sense, it is often not explicitly claimed as the method of analysis, when, in actuality, we argue that a lot of analysis is essentially thematic �/ but is either claimed as some- thing else (such as DA, or even content analysis (eg, Meehan et al ., 2000)) or not identified as any particular method at all �/ for example, data were ‘subjected to quali- tative analysis for commonly recurring themes’ (Braun and Wilkinson, 2003: 30). If we do not know how people went about analysing their data, or what assumptions informed their analysis, it is difficult to evaluate their research, and to compare and/or synthesize it with other studies on that topic, and it can impede other research- ers carrying out related projects in the future (Attride-Stirling, 2001). For these reasons alone, clarity on process and prac- tice of method is vital. We hope that this paper will lead to more clarity around thematic analysis. Relatedly, insufficient detail is often gi- ven to reporting the process and detail of analysis (Attride-Stirling, 2001). It is not uncommon to read of themes ‘emerging’ from the data (although this issue is not limited to thematic analysis). For example, Singer and Hunter’s (1999: 67) thematic discourse analysis of women’s experiences of early menopause identified that ‘several themes emerged’ during the analysis. Rubin and Rubin (1995: 226) claim that analysis is exciting because ‘you discover themes and concepts embedded throughout your inter- views’. An account of themes ‘emerging’ or being ‘discovered’ is a passive account of the process of analysis, and it denies the active role the researcher always plays in identifying patterns/themes, selecting which are of interest, and reporting them to the readers (Taylor and Ussher, 2001).4 The language of ‘themes emerging’: can be misinterpreted to mean that themes ‘re- side’ in the data, and if we just look hard enough they will ‘emerge’ like Venus on the half shell. If themes ‘reside’ anywhere, they reside in our heads from our thinking about our data and creating links as we understand them. (Ely et al ., 1997: 205�/6) At this point, it is important to acknowledge our own theoretical positions and values in relation to qualitative research. We do not subscribe to a naı̈ve realist view of qualita- tive research, where the researcher can simply ‘give voice’ (see Fine, 2002) to their participants. As Fine (2002): 218) argues, even a ‘giving voice’ approach ‘involves carving out unacknowledged pieces of narrative evidence that we select, edit, and deploy to border our arguments’. How- ever, nor do we think there is one ideal theoretical framework for conducting quali- tative research, or indeed one ideal method. What is important is that the theoretical framework and methods match what the researcher wants to know, and that they acknowledge these decisions, and recognize them as decisions. Thematic analysis differs from other ana- lytic methods that seek to describe patterns across qualitative data �/ such as ‘thematic’ DA, thematic decomposition analysis, IPA and grounded theory.5 Both IPA and grounded theory seek patterns in the data, but are theoretically bounded. IPA is at- tached to a phenomenological epistemology (Smith et al ., 1999; Smith and Osborn, 2003), which gives experience primacy (Holloway and Todres, 2003), and is about understanding people’s everyday experi- ence of reality, in great detail, in order to gain an understanding of the phenomenon in question (McLeod, 2001). To complicate matters, grounded theory comes in different versions (Charmaz, 2002). Regardless, the goal of a grounded theory analysis is to generate a plausible �/ and useful �/ theory 80 V Braun and V Clarke of the phenomena that is grounded in the data (McLeod, 2001). However, in our ex- perience, grounded theory seems increas- ingly to be used in a way that is essentially grounded theory ‘lite’ �/ as a set of proce- dures for coding data very much akin to thematic analysis. Such analyses do not appear to fully subscribe to the theoretical commitments of a ‘full-fat’ grounded theory, which requires analysis to be directed to- wards theory development (Holloway and Todres, 2003). We argue, therefore, that a ‘named and claimed’ thematic analysis means researchers need not subscribe to the implicit theoretical commitments of grounded theory if they do not wish to produce a fully worked-up grounded-theory analysis. The term ‘thematic DA’ is used to refer to a wide range of pattern-type analysis of data, ranging from thematic analysis within a social constructionist epistemology (ie, where patterns are identified as socially produced, but no discursive analyse is conducted), to forms of analysis very much akin to the interpretative repertoire form of DA (Clarke, 2005). Thematic decom- position analysis (eg, Stenner, 1993; Ussher and Mooney-Somers, 2000) is a specifically named form of ‘thematic’ DA, which iden- tifies patterns (themes, stories) within data, and theorizes language as constitutive of meaning and meaning as social. These different methods share a search for certain themes or patterns across an (entire) data set, rather than within a data item, such as an individual interview or interviews from one person, as in the case of biographical or case-study forms of analy- sis, such as narrative analysis (eg, Murray, 2003; Riessman, 1993). In this sense, they more or less overlap with thematic analysis. As thematic analysis does not require the detailed theoretical and technological knowledge of approaches, such as grounded theory and DA, it can offer a more accessible form of analysis, particularly for those early in a qualitative research career. In contrast to IPA or grounded theory (and other methods like narrative analysis DA or CA), thematic analysis is not wedded to any pre-existing theoretical framework, and therefore it can be used within different theoretical frameworks (although not all), and can be used to do different things within them. Thematic analysis can be an essentialist or realist method, which reports experiences, meanings and the reality of participants, or it can be a constructionist method, which examines the ways in which events, realities, meanings, experiences and so on are the effects of a range of discourses operating within society. It can also be a ‘contextualist’ method, sitting between the two poles of essentialism and construction- ism, and characterized by theories, such as critical realism (eg, Willig, 1999), which acknowledge the ways individuals make meaning of their experience, and, in turn, the ways the broader social context im- pinges on those meanings, while retaining focus on the material and other limits of ‘reality’. Therefore, thematic analysis can be a method that works both to reflect reality and to unpick or unravel the surface of ‘reality’. However, it is important that the theoretical position of a thematic analysis is made clear, as this is all too often left unspoken (and is then typically a realist account). Any theoretical framework carries with it a number of assumptions about the nature of the data, what they represent in terms of the ‘the world’, ‘reality’, and so forth. A good thematic analysis will make this transparent. A number of decisions Thematic analysis involves a number of choices which are often not made explicit Using thematic analysis in psychology 81 (or are certainly typically not discussed in the method section of papers), but which need explicitly to be considered and dis- cussed. In practice, these questions should be considered before analysis (and some- times even collection) of the data begins, and there needs to be an ongoing reflexive dialogue on the part of the researcher or researchers with regards to these issues, throughout the analytic process. The method section of Taylor and Ussher’s (2001) thematic DA of S&M provides a good example of research which presents this process explicitly; the method section of Braun and Wilkinson (2003) does not. What counts as a theme? A theme captures something important about the data in relation to the research question, and represents some level of patterned response or meaning within the data set. An important question to address in terms of coding is: what counts as a pattern/theme, or what ‘size’ does a theme need to be? This is a question of prevalence, in terms both of space within each data item and of prevalence across the entire data set. Ideally, there will be a number of instances of the theme across the data set, but more instances do not necessarily mean the theme itself is more crucial. As this is qualitative analysis, there is no hard-and- fast answer to the question of what propor- tion of your data set needs to display evidence of the theme for it to be considered a theme. It is not the case that if it was present in 50% of one’s data items, it would be a theme, but if it was present only in 47%, then it would not be a theme. Nor is it the case that a theme is only something that many data items give considerable attention to, rather than a sentence or two. A theme might be given considerable space in some data items, and little or none in others, or it might appear in relatively little of the data set. So, researcher judgement is necessary to determine what a theme is. Our initial guidance around this is that you need to retain some flexibility, and rigid rules really do not work. (The question of prevalence is revisited in relation to themes and sub- themes, as the refinement of analysis (see later) will often result in overall themes, and sub-themes within those.) Furthermore, the ‘keyness’ of a theme is not necessarily dependent on quantifiable measures �/ but rather on whether it cap- tures something important in relation to the overall research question. For exam- ple, in Victoria’s research on representa- tions of lesbians and gay parents on 26 talk shows (Clarke and Kitzinger, 2004), she identified six ‘key’ themes. These six themes were not necessarily the most pre- valent themes across the data set �/ they appeared in between two and 22 of the 26 talk shows �/ but together they captured an important element of the way in which lesbians and gay men ‘normalize’ their families in talk show debates. In this in- stance, her thematic analysis was driven by this particular analytic question. How she ‘measured’ prevalence is relevant, as pre- valence can be determined in a number of different ways. Prevalence was counted at the level of the data item (ie, did a theme appear anywhere in each individual talk show?). Alternatively, it could have been counted in terms of the number of different speakers who articulated the theme, across the entire data set, or each individual occurrence of the theme across the entire data set (which raises complex questions about where an ‘instance’ begins and ends within an extended sequence of talk �/ see Riessman, 1993). Because prevalence was not crucial to the analysis presented, Vic- toria chose the most straightforward form, 82 V Braun and V Clarke but it is important to note there is no right or wrong method for determining prevalence. Part of the flexibility of thematic analysis is that it allows you to determine themes (and prevalence) in a number of ways. What is important is that you are consistent in how you do this within any particular analysis. There are various ‘conventions’ for repre- senting prevalence in thematic (and other qualitative) analysis that does not provide a quantified measure (unlike much content analysis, Wilkinson, 2000) �/ for instance: ‘the majority of participants’ (Meehan et al ., 2000: 372), ‘many participants’ (Taylor and Ussher, 2001: 298), or ‘a number of participants’ (Braun et al ., 2003: 249). Such descriptors work rhetorically to suggest a theme really existed in the data, and to convince us they are reporting truthfully about the data. But do they tell us much? This is perhaps one area where more debate is needed about how and why we might represent the prevalence of themes in the data, and, indeed, whether, if, and why prevalence is particularly im- portant. A rich description of the data set, or a detailed account of one particular aspect It is important to determine the type of analysis you want to do, and the claims you want to make, in relation to your data set. For instance, you might wish to provide a rich thematic description of your entire data set, so that the reader gets a sense of the predominant or important themes. In this case, the themes you identify, code, and analyse would need to be an accurate reflec- tion of the content of the entire data set. In such an analysis, some depth and complex- ity is necessarily lost (particularly if you are writing a short dissertation or article with strict word limits), but a rich overall de- scription is maintained. This might be a particularly useful method when you are investigating an under-researched area, or you are working with participants whose views on the topic are not known. An alternative use of thematic analysis is to provide a more detailed and nuanced account of one particular theme, or group of themes, within the data. This might relate to a specific question or area of interest within the data (a semantic approach �/ see below), or to a particular ‘latent’ theme (see below) across the whole or majority of the data set. An example of this would be Victoria’s talk show paper, discussed previously (Clarke and Kitzinger, 2004), which examined nor- malization in lesbians’ and gay men’s ac- counts of parenting. Inductive versus theoretical thematic analysis Themes or patterns within data can be identified in one of two primary ways in thematic analysis: in an inductive or ‘bot- tom up’ way (eg, Frith and Gleeson, 2004), or in a theoretical or deductive or ‘top down’ way (eg, Boyatzis, 1998; Hayes, 1997). An inductive approach means the themes identified are strongly linked to the data themselves (Patton, 1990) (as such, this form of thematic analysis bears some simi- larity to grounded theory). In this approach, if the data have been collected specifically for the research (eg, via interview or focus group), the themes identified may bear little relation to the specific questions that were asked of the participants. They would also not be driven by the researcher’s theoretical interest in the area or topic. Inductive analysis is therefore a process of coding the data without trying to fit it into a pre- existing coding frame, or the researcher’s analytic preconceptions. In this sense, this form of thematic analysis is data-driven. Using thematic analysis in psychology 83 However, it is important to note, as we discussed earlier, that researchers cannot free themselves of their theoretical and epistemological commitments, and data are not coded in an epistemological va- cuum. In contrast, a ‘theoretical’ thematic analy- sis would tend to be driven by the research- er’s theoretical or analytic interest in the area, and is thus more explicitly analyst- driven. This form of thematic analysis tends to provide less a rich description of the data overall, and more a detailed analysis of some aspect of the data. Additionally, the choice between inductive and theoretical maps onto how and why you are coding the data. You can either code for a quite specific research question (which maps onto the more theoretical approach) or the specific research question can evolve through the coding process (which maps onto the in- ductive approach). For example, if a researcher was inter- ested in talk about heterosex, and had collected interview data, with an inductive approach they would read and re-read the data for any themes related to heterosex, and code diversely, without paying atten- tion to the themes that previous research on the topic might have identified. For exam- ple, the researcher would not look to the influential research of Hollway (1989), identifying discourses of heterosex, and code just for male sexual drive, have/hold or permissive discourse themes. In contrast, with a theoretical approach, the researcher may well be interested in the way permis- siveness plays out across the data, and focus on that particular feature in coding the data. This would then result in a number of themes around permissiveness, which may include, speak to, or expand on something approximating Hollway’s origi- nal theme. Semantic or latent themes Another decision revolves around the ‘le- vel’ at which themes are to be identified: at a semantic or explicit level, or at a latent or interpretative level (Boyatzis, 1998).6 A thematic analysis typically focuses exclu- sively or primarily on one level. With a semantic approach, the themes are identi- fied within the explicit or surface meanings of the data, and the analyst is not looking for anything beyond what a participant has said or what has been written. Ideally, the analytic process involves a progression from description , where the data have simply been organized to show patterns in seman- tic content, and summarized, to interpreta- tion , where there is an attempt to theorize the significance of the patterns and their broader meanings and implications (Patton, 1990), often in relation to previous literature (for an excellent example of this, see Frith and Gleeson, 2004). In contrast, a thematic analysis at the latent level goes beyond the semantic con- tent of the data, and starts to identify or examine the underlying ideas, assumptions, and conceptualizations �/ and ideologies �/ that are theorized as shaping or informing the semantic content of the data. If we imagine our data three-dimensionally as an uneven blob of jelly, the semantic approach would seek to describe the surface of the jelly, its form and meaning, while the latent approach would seek to identify the features that gave it that particular form and meaning. Thus, for latent thematic analysis, the development of the themes themselves involves interpretative work, and the ana- lysis that is produced is not just descrip- tion, but is already theorized. Analysis within this latter tradition tends to come from a constructionist paradigm (eg, Burr, 1995), and in this form, thematic analysis overlaps with some forms of ‘DA’ 84 V Braun and V Clarke (which are sometimes specifically referred to as ‘thematic DA’ (eg, Singer and Hunter, 1999; Taylor and Ussher, 2001)), where broader assumptions, structures and/or meanings are theorized as underpinning what is actually articulated in the data. Increasingly, a number of discourse analysts are also revisiting psycho-analytic modes of interpretation (eg, Hollway and Jefferson, 2000), and latent thematic analysis would also be compatible with that framework. Epistemology: essentialist/realist versus constructionist thematic analysis As we have argued, thematic analysis can be conducted within both realist/essentialist and constructionist paradigms, although the outcome and focus will be different for each. The question of epistemology is usually determined when a research project is being conceptualized, although episte- mology may also raise its head again during analysis, when the research focus may shift to an interest in different aspects of the data. The research epistemology guides what you can say about your data, and informs how you theorize meaning. For instance, with an essentialist/realist approach, you can theo- rize motivations, experience, and meaning in a straightforward way, because a simple, largely unidirectional relationship is as- sumed between meaning and experience and language (language reflects and enables us to articulate meaning and experience) (Potter and Wetherell, 1987; Widdicombe and Wooffitt, 1995). In contrast, from a constructionist per- spective, meaning and experience are so- cially produced and reproduced, rather than inhering within individuals (Burr, 1995). Therefore, thematic analysis con- ducted within a constructionist framework cannot and does not seek to focus on motivation or individual psychologies, but instead seeks to theorize the sociocultural contexts, and structural conditions, that enable the individual accounts that are provided. Thematic analysis that focuses on ‘latent’ themes tends to be more con- structionist, and it also tends to start to overlap with thematic DA at this point. However, not all ‘latent’ thematic analysis is constructionist. The many questions of qualitative research It is worth briefly noting that qualitative research involves a series of questions, and there is a need to be clear about the relation- ship between these different questions. First, there is the overall research question or questions that drive the project. A re- search question might be very broad (and exploratory), such as ‘how is lesbian and gay parenting constructed?’ or ‘what are the meanings of the vagina?’. Narrower research questions might be ‘how and why is lesbian and gay parenting normalized?’ (Clarke and Kitzinger, 2004), or ‘what are the discourses around vaginal size?’ (see Braun and Kit- zinger, 2001). These narrow questions may be part of a broader overarching research question, and if so, the analyses they inform would also provide answers to the overall research question. Although all projects are guided by research questions, these may also be refined as a project progresses. Second, if data from interviews or focus groups have been collected, there are the questions that participants have responded to. Finally, there are the questions that guide the coding and analysis of the data. There is no necessary relationship between these three, and indeed, it is often desirable that there is a disjuncture between them. Some of the worst examples of ‘thematic’ analysis we have read have simply used the questions put to participants as the ‘themes’ identified in the ‘analysis’ �/ Using thematic analysis in psychology 85 although in such instances, no analysis has really been done at all! To sum up, thematic analysis involves the searching across a data set �/ be that a number of interviews or focus groups, or a range of texts �/ to find repeated patterns of meaning. The exact form and product of thematic analysis varies, as indicated above, and so it is important that the questions outlined above are considered before and during thematic analyses. Those appro- aches which consider specific aspects, la- tent themes and are constructionist tend to often cluster together, while those that consider meanings across the whole data set, semantic themes, and are realist, often cluster together. However, there are no hard- and-fast rules in relation to this, and differ- ent combinations are possible. What is important is that the finished product con- tains an account �/ not necessarily that detailed �/ of what was done, and why. So what does one actually do? We now provide what is, we hope, a straightforward step- by-step guide to conducting thematic ana- lysis. Doing thematic analysis: a step-by-step guide Some of the phases of thematic analysis are similar to the phases of other qualitative research, so these stages are not necessarily all unique to thematic analysis. The process starts when the analyst begins to notice, and look for, patterns of meaning and issues of potential interest in the data �/ this may be during data collection. The endpoint is the reporting of the content and meaning of patterns (themes) in the data, where ‘themes are abstract (and often fuzzy) constructs the investigators identify [sic] before, during, and after analysis’ (Ryan and Bernard, 2000: 780). Analysis involves a constant moving back and for- ward between the entire data set, the coded extracts of data that you are analysing, and the analysis of the data that you are produ- cing. Writing is an integral part of analysis, not something that takes place at the end, as it does with statistical analyses. Therefore, writing should begin in phase one, with the jotting down of ideas and potential coding schemes, and continue right through the entire coding/analysis process. There are different positions regarding when you should engage with the literature relevant to your analysis �/ with some arguing that early reading can narrow your analytic field of vision, leading you to focus on some aspects of the data at the expense of other potentially crucial aspects. Others argue that engagement with the literature can enhance your analysis by sensitizing you to more subtle features of the data (Tuckett, 2005). Therefore, there is no one right way to proceed with reading for the- matic analysis, although a more inductive approach would be enhanced by not enga- ging with literature in the early stages of analysis, whereas a theoretical approach requires engagement with the literature prior to analysis. We provide an outline guide through the six phases of analysis, and offer examples to demonstrate the process.7 The different phases are summarized in Table 1. It is important to recognize that qualitative ana- lysis guidelines are exactly that �/ they are not rules, and, following the basic precepts, will need to be applied flexibly to fit the research questions and data (Patton, 1990). Moreover, analysis is not a linear process of simply moving from one phase to the next. Instead, it is more recursive process, where movement is back and forth as needed, throughout the phases. It is also a process 86 V Braun and V Clarke that develops over time (Ely et al ., 1997), and should not be rushed. Phase 1: familiarizing yourself with your data When you engage in analysis, you may have collected the data yourself, or they may have been given to you. If you collected them through interactive means, you will come to the analysis with some prior knowledge of the data, and possibly some initial analytic interests or thoughts. Regardless, it is vital that you immerse yourself in the data to the extent that you are familiar with the depth and breadth of the content. Immersion usually involves ‘repeated reading’ of the data, and reading the data in an active way �/ searching for meanings, patterns and so on. It is ideal to read through the entire data set at least once before you begin your coding, as ideas and identification of possible pat- terns will be shaped as you read through. Whether or not you are aiming for an overall or detailed analysis, are searching for latent or semantic themes, or are data- or theoretically-driven will inform how the reading proceeds. Regardless, it is impor- tant to be familiar with all aspects of your data. At this phase, one of the reasons why qualitative research tends to use far smaller samples than, for example, questionnaire research will become apparent �/ the read- ing and re-reading of data is time-consum- ing. It is, therefore, tempting to skip over this phase, or be selective. We would strongly advise against this, as this phase provides the bedrock for the rest of the analysis. During this phase, it is a good idea to start taking notes or marking ideas for coding that you will then go back to in subsequent phases. Once you have done this, you are ready to begin, the more formal coding process. In essence, coding continues to be developed and defined throughout the en- tire analysis. Transcription of verbal data If you are working with verbal data, such as interviews, television programmes or poli- tical speeches, the data will need to be transcribed into written form in order to conduct a thematic analysis. The process of transcription, while it may seen time-con- suming, frustrating, and at times boring, can be an excellent way to start familiarizing yourself with the data (Riessman, 1993). Further, some researchers even argue it should be seen as ‘a key phase of data analysis within interpretative qualita- tive methodology’ (Bird, 2005: 227), and recognized as an interpretative act, where Table 1 Phases of thematic analysis Phase Description of the process 1. Familiarizing yourself with your data: Transcribing data (if necessary), reading and re-reading the data, noting down initial ideas. 2. Generating initial codes: Coding interesting features of the data in a systematic fashion across the entire data set, collating data relevant to each code. 3. Searching for themes: Collating codes into potential themes, gathering all data relevant to each potential theme. 4. Reviewing themes: Checking if the themes work in relation to the coded extracts (Level 1) and the entire data set (Level 2), generating a thematic ‘map’ of the analysis. 5. Defining and naming themes: Ongoing analysis to refine the specifics of each theme, and the overall story the analysis tells, generating clear definitions and names for each theme. 6. Producing the report: The final opportunity for analysis. Selection of vivid, compelling extract examples, final analysis of selected extracts, relating back of the analysis to the research question and literature, producing a scholarly report of the analysis. Using thematic analysis in psychology 87 meanings are created, rather than simply a mechanical act of putting spoken sounds on paper (Lapadat and Lindsay, 1999). Various conventions exist for transforming spoken texts into written texts (see Edwards and Lampert, 1993; Lapadat and Lindsay, 1999). Some systems of transcription have been developed for specific forms of analysis �/ such as the ‘Jefferson’ system for CA (see Atkinson and Heritage, 1984; Hutchby and Wooffitt, 1998). However, thematic analysis, even constructionist thematic analysis, does not require the same level of detail in the transcript as conversation, discourse or even narrative analysis. As there is no one way to conduct thematic analysis, there is no one set of guidelines to follow when producing a transcript. However, at a minimum it re- quires a rigorous and thorough ‘ortho- graphic’ transcript �/ a ‘verbatim’ account of all verbal (and sometimes nonverbal �/ eg, coughs) utterances.8 What is important is that the transcript retains the information you need, from the verbal account, and in a way which is ‘true’ to its original nature (eg, punctuation added can alter the meaning of data �/ for example ‘I hate it, you know. I do’ versus ‘I hate it. You know I do’, Poland, 2002: 632), and that the transcription con- vention is practically suited to the purpose of analysis (Edwards, 1993). As we have noted, the time spent in transcription is not wasted, as it informs the early stages of analysis, and you will develop a far more thorough understanding of your data through having transcribed it. Furthermore, the close attention needed to transcribe data may facilitate the close read- ing and interpretative skills needed to ana- lyse the data (Lapadat and Lindsay, 1999). If your data have already been, or will be, transcribed for you, it is important that you spend more time familiarising yourself with the data, and also check the transcripts back against the original audio recordings for ‘accuracy’ (as should always be done). Phase 2: generating initial codes Phase 2 begins when you have read and familiarized yourself with the data, and have generated an initial list of ideas about what is in the data and what is interesting about them. This phase then involves the produc- tion of initial codes from the data. Codes identify a feature of the data (semantic content or latent) that appears interesting to the analyst, and refer to ‘the most basic segment, or element, of the raw data or information that can be assessed in a mean- ingful way regarding the phenomenon’ (Boyatzis, 1998: 63). See Figure 1 for an example of codes applied to a short segment of data. The process of coding is part of analysis (Miles and Huberman, 1994), as you are organising your data into meaningful groups (Tuckett, 2005). However, your coded data differ from the units of analysis (your themes), which are (often) broader. Your themes, which you start to develop in the next phase, are where the interpretative analysis of the data occurs, and in relation to which arguments about the phenomenon being examined are made (Boyatzis, 1998). Coding will, to some extent, depend on whether the themes are more ‘data-driven’ or ‘theory-driven’ �/ in the former, the Data extract Coded for it's too much like hard work I mean how much paper have you got to sign to change a flippin’ name no I I mean no I no we we have thought about it ((inaudible)) half heartedly and thought no no I jus- I can’t be bothered, it’s too much like hard work. (Kate F07a) 1. Talked about with partner 2. Too much hassle to change name Figure 1 Data extract, with codes applied (from Clarke et al ., 2006) 88 V Braun and V Clarke themes will depend on the data, but in the latter, you might approach the data with specific questions in mind that you wish to code around. It will also depend on whether you are aiming to code the content of the entire data set, or whether you are coding to identify particular (and possibly limited) features of the data set. Coding can be performed either manually or through a software programme (see, eg, Kelle, 2004; Seale, 2000, for discussion of software programmes). Work systematically through the entire data set, giving full and equal attention to each data item, and identify interesting aspects in the data items that may form the basis of repeated patterns (themes) across the data set. There are a number of ways of actually coding extracts. If coding manually, you can code your data by writ- ing notes on the texts you are analysing, by using highlighters or coloured pens to indicate potential patterns, or by using ‘post-it’ notes to identify segments of data. You may initially identify the codes, and then match them with data extracts that demonstrate that code, but it is important in this phase to ensure that all actual data extracts are coded, and then collated to- gether within each code. This may involve copying extracts of data from individual transcripts or photocopying extracts of printed data, and collating each code to- gether in separate computer files or using file cards. If using computer software, you code by tagging and naming selections of text within each data item. Key advice for this phase is: (a) code for as many potential themes/patterns as possible (time permitting) �/ you never know what might be interesting later; (b) code extracts of data inclusively �/ ie, keep a little of the surrounding data if relevant, a common criticism of coding is that the context is lost (Bryman, 2001); and (c) remember that you can code individual extracts of data in as many different ‘themes’ as they fit into �/ so an extract may be uncoded, coded once, or coded many times, as relevant. Note that no data set is without contradiction, and a satisfactory thematic ‘map’ that you will eventually produce �/ an overall conceptua- lization of the data patterns, and relation- ships between them9 �/ does not have to smooth out or ignore the tensions and inconsistencies within and across data items. It is important to retain accounts that depart from the dominant story in the analysis, so do not ignore these in your coding. Phase 3: searching for themes Phase 3 begins when all data have been initially coded and collated, and you have a long list of the different codes that you have identified across the data set. This phase, which re-focuses the analysis at the broader level of themes, rather than codes, involves sorting the different codes into potential themes, and collating all the relevant coded data extracts within the identified themes. Essentially, you are starting to analyse your codes and consider how different codes may combine to form an overarching theme. It may be helpful at this phase to use visual representations to help you sort the differ- ent codes into themes. You might use tables, or mind-maps, or write the name each code (and a brief description) on a separate piece of paper and play around with organizing them into theme-piles. A thematic map of this early stage can be seen in Figure 2 (the examples in Figures 2�/4 come from the analysis presented in Braun and Wilkinson, 2003 of women’s talk about the vagina). This is when you start thinking about the relationship between codes, between themes, and between different levels of themes (eg, main overarching themes and Using thematic analysis in psychology 89 sub-themes within them). Some initial codes may go on to form main themes, whereas others may form sub-themes, and others still may be discarded. At this stage, you may also have a set of codes that do not seem to belong anywhere, and it is perfectly acceptable to create a ‘theme’ called ‘mis- cellaneous’ to house the codes �/ possibly temporarily �/ that do not seem to fit into your main themes. You end this phase with a collection of candidate themes, and sub-themes, and all extracts of data that have been coded in relation to them. At this point, you will start to have a sense of the significance of individual themes. However, do not aban- don anything at this stage, as without looking at all the extracts in detail (the next phase) it is uncertain whether the themes hold as they are, or whether some Figure 2 Initial thematic map, showing five main themes (final analysis presented in Braun and Wilkinson, 2003) Figure 3 Developed thematic map, showing three main themes (final analysis presented in Braun and Wilkinson, 2003) 90 V Braun and V Clarke need to be combined, refined and separated, or discarded. Phase 4: reviewing themes Phase 4 begins when you have devised a set of candidate themes, and it involves the refinement of those themes. During this phase, it will become evident that some candidate themes are not really themes (eg, if there are not enough data to support them, or the data are too diverse), while others might collapse into each other (eg, two apparently separate themes might form one theme). Other themes might need to be broken down into separate themes. Patton’s (1990) for dual criteria judging categories �/ internal homogeneity and ex- ternal heterogeneity �/ are worth consider- ing here. Data within themes should cohere together meaningfully, while there should be clear and identifiable distinctions be- tween themes. This phase involves two levels of review- ing and refining your themes. Level one involves reviewing at the level of the coded data extracts. This means you need to read all the collated extracts for each theme, and consider whether they appear to form a coherent pattern. If your candidate themes do appear to form a coherent pattern, you then move on to the second level of this phase. If your candidate themes do not fit, you will need to consider whether the theme itself is problematic, or whether some of the data extracts within it simply do not fit there �/ in which case, you would rework your theme, creating a new theme, finding a home for those extracts that do not currently work in an already-existing theme, or discarding them from the analy- sis. Once you are satisfied that your candi- date themes adequately capture the contours of the coded data �/ once you have a candidate ‘thematic map’ �/ you are ready to move on to level two of this phase. The outcome of this refinement process can be seen in the thematic map presented in Figure 3. Level two involves a similar process, but in relation to the entire data set. At this level, you consider the validity of indivi- dual themes in relation to the data set, but also whether your candidate thematic map ‘accurately’ reflects the meanings evident in the data set as a whole. To some extent, what counts as ‘accurate representation’ depends on your theoretical and analytic approach. However, in this phase you re- read your entire data set for two purposes. The first is, as discussed, to ascertain whether the themes ‘work’ in relation to the data set. The second is to code any additional data within themes that has been missed in earlier coding stages. The need for re-coding from the data set is to be expected as coding is an ongoing organic process. If the thematic map works, then you moves on to the next phase. However, if the map does not fit the data set, you need to return to further reviewing and refining of your coding until you have devised a Figure 4 Final thematic map, showing final two main themes (see Braun and Wilkinson, 2003). Using thematic analysis in psychology 91 satisfactory thematic map. In so doing, it is possible that you will identify potential new themes, and you will need to start coding for these as well, if they are of interest and relevent. However, a word of warning: as coding data and generating themes could go on ad infinitum , it is important not to get over-enthusiastic with endless re-coding. It is impossible to pro- vide clear guidelines on when to stop, but when your refinements are not adding any- thing substantial, stop! If the process of recoding is only fine-tuning and making more nuanced a coding frame that already works �/ ie, it fits the data well �/ recognize this and stop. Consider it as similar to editing written work �/ you could endlessly edit your sentences and paragraphs, but after a few editing turns, any further work is usually unnecessary refinement �/ similar to rearranging the hundreds and thousands on an already nicely decorated cake. At the end of this phase, you should have a fairly good idea of what your different themes are, how they fit together, and the overall story they tell about the data. Phase 5: defining and naming themes Phase 5 begins when you have a satisfactory thematic map of your data �/ see Figure 4 for the final refinements of Virginia’s thematic map. At this point, you then define and further refine the themes you will present for your analysis, and analyse the data within them. By ‘define and refine’, we mean identifying the ‘essence’ of what each theme is about (as well as the themes overall), and determining what aspect of the data each theme captures. It is important not to try and get a theme to do too much, or to be too diverse and complex. You do this by going back to collated data extracts for each theme, and organizing them into a coherent and internally consistent account, with accompanying narrative. It is vital that you do not just paraphrase the content of the data extracts presented, but identify what is of interest about them and why. For each individual theme, you need to conduct and write a detailed analysis. As well as identifying the ‘story’ that each theme tells, it is important to consider how it fits into the broader overall ‘story’ that you are telling about your data, in relation to the research question or ques- tions, to ensure there is not too much overlap between themes. So it is necessary to consider the themes themselves, and each theme in relation to the others. As part of the refinement, you will need to identify whether or not a theme contains any sub-themes. Sub-themes are essentially themes-within-a-theme. They can be useful for giving structure to a particularly large and complex theme, and also for demon- strating the hierarchy of meaning within the data. For instance, in one of Virginia’s analyses of women’s talk about the vagina, she identified two overarching themes in women’s talk: the vagina as liability, and the vagina as asset (Braun and Wilkinson, 2003). Within each theme, three sub-themes were identified: for liability the sub-themes were ‘nastiness and dirtiness’, ‘anxieties’ and ‘vulnerability’; for asset the sub-themes were ‘satisfaction’, ‘power’ and ‘pleasure’. However, these eventual final themes and sub-themes resulted from a process of re- finement of initial themes and sub-themes, as shown in Figures 2�/4. It is important that by the end of this phase you can clearly define what your themes are and what they are not. One test for this is to see whether you can describe the scope and content of each theme in a couple of sen- tences. If not, further refinement of that theme may be needed. Although you will already have given your themes working titles, this is also the point to start thinking 92 V Braun and V Clarke about the names you will give them in the final analysis. Names need to be concise, punchy, and immediately give the reader a sense of what the theme is about. Phase 6: producing the report Phase 6 begins when you have a set of fully worked-out themes, and involves the final analysis and write-up of the report. The task of the write-up of a thematic anal- ysis, whether it is for publication or for a research assignment or dissertation, is to tell the complicated story of your data in a way which convinces the reader of the merit and validity of your analysis. It is important that the analysis (the write-up of it, includ- ing data extracts) provides a concise, coher- ent, logical, non-repetitive and interesting account of the story the data tell �/ within and across themes. Your write-up must provide sufficient evidence of the themes within the data �/ ie, enough data extracts to demonstrate the prevalence of the theme. Choose particularly vivid examples, or ex- tracts which capture the essence of the point you are demonstrating, without un- necessary complexity. The extract should be easily identifiable as an example of the issue. However, your write-up needs to do more than just provide data. Extracts need to be embedded within an analytic narrative that compellingly illustrates the story you are telling about your data, and your analy- tic narrative needs to go beyond description of the data, and make an argument in relation to your research question. Pinning down what interpretative analysis actually entails It is difficult to specify exactly what inter- pretative analysis actually entails, particu- larly as the specifics of it will vary from study to study. As a first step, we recom- mend looking at published examples of thematic analysis, particularly of the speci- fic version you are planning to use (this is made somewhat more difficult in that the- matic analysis is often not a named method, but you can find examples, eg, Ellis and Kitzinger, 2002; Kitzinger and Willmott, 2002; Toerien and Wilkinson, 2004). In order to provide a sense of the sorts of questions you should be asking of your data, and the sorts of analytic claims you should be seeking to make, we will discuss a particularly good example of an inductive thematic analysis, which emphasizes un- derstanding men’s experiences in relation to the broader social context (see Frith and Gleeson, 2004). Frith and Gleeson (2004) aim to ex- plore how men’s feelings about their bodies influence their clothing practices, and they use data gathered in qualitative questionnaires from 75 men to answer this question. They report four themes: practicality of clothing choices; lack of concern about appearance; use of cloth- ing to conceal or reveal the body; use of clothing to fit cultural ideals. Each theme is clearly linked back to the overall research question, but each is distinct. They provide a clear sense of the scope and diversity of each theme, using a combination of analyst narrative and illustrative data extracts. Where relevant, they broaden their analysis out, moving from a descriptive to an interpretative level (often relating their claims to exist- ing literature). For example, in ‘men value practicality’, they make sense of men’s accounts in relation to gender norms and stereotypes, linking the ac- counts individual men provided to the expectations that men �/ as members of society �/ face. What they do, as analysts, Using thematic analysis in psychology 93 is relate the patterns of meaning in men’s responses to an academic analysis of how gender operates. In so doing, they de- monstrate the dual position that analysts need to take: as both cultural members and cultural commentators . Their ‘discus- sion’ section makes broader analytic statements about the overall story that the themes tell us about men’s relation- ship with clothing. This story reveals that men ‘deliberately and strategically use clothing to manipulate their appear- ance to meet cultural ideals of masculi- nity’ (Frith and Gleeson, 2004: 45), in a way more traditionally associated with women. This analysis makes an impor- tant contribution in that it challenges perceived wisdom about clothing/appear- ance and masculinity. As this example demonstrates, your ana- lytic claims need to be grounded in, but go beyond, the ‘surface’ of the data, even for a ‘semantic’ level analysis. The sort of ques- tions you need to be asking, towards the end phases of your analysis, include: ‘What does this theme mean?’ ‘What are the assump- tions underpinning it?’ ‘What are the im- plications of this theme?’ ‘What conditions are likely to have given rise to it?’ ‘Why do people talk about this thing in this particular way (as opposed to other ways)?’ and ‘What is the overall story the different themes reveal about the topic?’. These sorts of questions should guide the analysis once you have a clear sense of your thematic map. Potential pitfalls to avoid when doing thematic analysis Thematic analysis is a relatively straight- forward form of qualitative analysis, which does not require the same detailed theore- tical and technical knowledge that ap- proaches such as DA or CA do. It is relatively easy to conduct a good thematic analysis on qualitative data, even when you are still learning qualitative techniques. However, there are a number of things that can result in a poor analysis. In this section we identify these potential pitfalls, in the hope that they can be avoided. The first of these is a failure to actually analyse the data at all! Thematic analysis is not just a collection of extracts strung together with little or no analytic narrative. Nor is it a selection of extracts with analytic comment that simply or primarily para- phrases their content. The extracts in the- matic analysis are illustrative of the analytic points the researcher makes about the data, and should be used to illustrate/support an analysis that goes beyond their specific content, to make sense of the data, and tell the reader what it does or might mean �/ as discussed above. A second, associated pit- fall is the using of the data collection questions (such as from an interview sche- dule) as the ‘themes’ that are reported. In such a case, no analytic work has been carried out to identify themes across the entire data set, or make sense of the pattern- ing of responses. The third is a weak or unconvincing analysis, where the themes do not appear to work, where there is too much overlap between themes, or where the themes are not internally coherent and consistent. All aspects of the theme should cohere around a central idea or concept. This pitfall has occurred if, depending on what the analysis is trying to do, it fails adequately to capture the majority of the data, or fails to provide a rich description/interpretation of one or more aspects of the data. A weak or un- 94 V Braun and V Clarke convincing analysis can also stem from a failure to provide adequate examples from the data �/ for example, only one or two extracts for a theme. This point is essen- tially about the rhetorics of presentation, and the need for the analysis to be convin- cing to someone who has not read the entire data set: ‘The ‘‘analysis’’ of the material. . . is a deliberate and self-consciously artful crea- tion by the researcher, and must be con- structed to persuade the reader of the plausibility of an argument’ (Foster and Parker, 1995: 204). In so doing, one avoids (the appearance of) what Bryman (1988) has referred to as ‘anecdotalism’ in qualitative research �/ where one or a few instances of a phenomenon are reified into a pattern or theme, when it or they are actually idiosyn- cratic. This is not to say that a few instances cannot be of interest, or revealing; but it is important not to misrepresent them as an overarching theme. The fourth pitfall is a mismatch between the data and the analytic claims that are made about it. In such an (unfounded) analysis, the claims cannot be supported by the data, or, in the worst case, the data extracts presented suggest another analysis or even contradict the claims. The re- searcher needs to make sure that their interpretations and analytic points are con- sistent with the data extracts. A weak analysis does not appear to consider other obvious alternative readings of the data, or fails to consider variation (and even contra- diction) in the account that is produced. A pattern in data is rarely, if ever, going to be 100% complete and non-contradicted, so an analysis which suggests that it is, without a thorough explanation, is open to suspicion. It is important to pick compelling examples to demonstrate the themes, so give this considerable thought. The fifth involves a mismatch between theory and analytic claims, or between the research questions and the form of thematic analysis used. A good thematic analysis needs to make sure that the interpretations of the data are consistent with the theoretical framework. So, for instance, if you are work- ing within an experiential framework, you would typically not make claims about the social construction of the research topic, and if you were doing constructionist thematic analysis, you would not treat people’s talk of experience as a transparent window on their world. Finally, even a good and inter- esting analysis which fails to spell out its theoretical assumptions, or clarify how it was undertaken, and for what purpose, is lacking crucial information (Holloway and Todres, 2003), and thus fails in one aspect. What makes good thematic analysis? One of the criticisms of qualitative research from those outside the field is the percep- tion that ‘anything goes’. For instance, this sentiment is echoed in the first sentence of Laubschagne’s (2003) abstract: ‘For many scientists used to doing quantitative studies the whole concept of qualitative research is unclear, almost foreign, or ‘‘airy fairy’’ �/ not ‘‘real’’ research.’ However, although ‘quali- tative’ research cannot be subjected to the same criteria as ‘quantitative’ approaches, it does provide methods of analysis that should be applied rigorously to the data. Furthermore, criteria for conducting good qualitative research �/ both data collection and analysis �/ do exist (eg, Elliott et al ., 1999; Parker, 2004; Seale, 1999; Silverman, 2000; Yardley, 2000). The British Psycholo- gical Society offers relatively succinct on- line guidelines for assessing quality in qua- litative research (see http://www.bps.org. Using thematic analysis in psychology 95 uk/publications/journals/joop/qualitative- guidelines.cfm). ‘Criteria’ for assessing qua- litative research is a not uncontroversial topic, with concerns raised about rigid criteria limiting freedom and stifling meth- odological development (Elliott et al ., 1999; Parker, 2004; Reicher, 2000). Reicher (2000) takes the critique further, by asking whether the incredibly diverse range of qualitative approaches can and should be subject to the same criteria. Bracketing these critiques off, the issues raised in many general qualitative research assessment criteria can be more or less applied to thematic forms of analysis. As thematic analysis is a flexible method, you also need to be clear and explicit about what you are doing, and what you say you are doing needs to match up with what you actually do. In this sense, the theory and method need to be applied rigorously, and ‘rigour lies in devising a systematic method whose assumptions are congruent with the way one conceptualizes the subject matter’ (Reicher and Taylor, 2005: 549). A concise checklist of criteria to consider when deter- mining whether you have generated a good thematic analysis is provided in Table 2. So what does thematic analysis offer psychologists? We now end this paper with some brief comments on the advantages and disadvan- tages of thematic analysis. As we have shown throughout this paper, thematic ana- lysis is not a complex method. Indeed, as you can see from Table 3, its advantages are many. However, it is not without some disadvantages, which we will now briefly consider. Many of the disadvantages de- pend more on poorly conducted analyses or inappropriate research questions than on Table 2 A 15-point checklist of criteria for good thematic analysis Process No. Criteria Transcription 1 The data have been transcribed to an appropriate level of detail, and the transcripts have been checked against the tapes for ‘accuracy’. Coding 2 Each data item has been given equal attention in the coding process. 3 Themes have not been generated from a few vivid examples (an anecdotal approach), but instead the coding process has been thorough, inclusive and comprehensive. 4 All relevant extracts for all each theme have been collated. 5 Themes have been checked against each other and back to the original data set. 6 Themes are internally coherent, consistent, and distinctive. Analysis 7 Data have been analysed �/ interpreted, made sense of �/ rather than just paraphrased or described. 8 Analysis and data match each other �/ the extracts illustrate the analytic claims. 9 Analysis tells a convincing and well-organized story about the data and topic. 10 A good balance between analytic narrative and illustrative extracts is provided. Overall 11 Enough time has been allocated to complete all phases of the analysis adequately, without rushing a phase or giving it a once-over-lightly. Written report 12 The assumptions about, and specific approach to, thematic analysis are clearly explicated. 13 There is a good fit between what you claim you do, and what you show you have done �/ ie, described method and reported analysis are consistent. 14 The language and concepts used in the report are consistent with the epistemological position of the analysis. 15 The researcher is positioned as active in the research process; themes do not just ‘emerge’. 96 V Braun and V Clarke the method itself. Further, the flexibility of the method �/ which allows for a wide range of analytic options �/ means that the poten- tial range of things that can be said about your data is broad. While this is an advan- tage, it can also be a disadvantage in that it makes developing specific guidelines for higher-phase analysis difficult, and can be potentially paralysing to the researcher try- ing to decide what aspects of their data to focus on. Another issue to consider is that a thematic analysis has limited interpretative power beyond mere description if it is not used within an existing theoretical frame- work that anchors the analytic claims that are made. Other disadvantages appear when the- matic analysis is considered in relation to some of the other qualitative analytic meth- ods. For instance, unlike narrative or other biographical approaches, you are unable to retain a sense of continuity and contradic- tion through any one individual account, and these contradictions and consistencies across individual accounts may be reveal- ing. In contrast to methods similar to DA and CA, a simple thematic analysis does not allow the researcher to make claims about language use, or the fine-grained function- ality of talk. Finally, it is worth noting that thematic analysis currently has no particular kudos as an analytic method �/ this, we argue, stems from the very fact that it is poorly demarcated and claimed, yet widely used. This means that thematic analysis is fre- quently, or appears to be, what is simply carried out by someone without the knowl- edge or skills to perform a supposedly more sophisticated �/ certainly more kudos-bear- ing �/ ‘branded’ form of analysis like grounded theory, IPA or DA. We hope this paper will change this view as, we argue, a rigorous thematic approach can produce an insightful analysis that answers particular research questions. What is important is choosing a method that is appropriate to your research question, rather than falling victim to ‘methodolatry’, where you are committed to method rather than topic/ content or research questions (Holloway and Todres, 2003). Indeed, your method of analysis should be driven by both your research question and your broader theore- tical assumptions. As we have demon- strated, thematic analysis is a flexible approach that can be used across a range of epistemologies and research questions. Notes 1. Boyatzis (1998) provides a much more detailed account of thematic analysis. However, we do not feel that it is a particularly accessible account for those unfamiliar with qualitative approaches. Moreover, his approach differs from ours in that, although he acknowledges the subjective dimension of qualitative analysis, his approach is ultimately, if often implicitly, located within a positivist empiricist paradigm. 2. Dey’s (1993) account of on ‘qualitative data analysis’, which aims to identify shared techni- ques across the diverse range of qualitative Table 3 Advantages of thematic analysis Flexibility. Relatively easy and quick method to learn, and do. Accessible to researchers with little or no experience of qualitative research. Results are generally accessible to educated general public. Useful method for working within participatory re- search paradigm, with participants as collaborators. Can usefully summarize key features of a large body of data, and/or offer a ‘thick description’ of the data set. Can highlight similarities and differences across the data set. Can generate unanticipated insights. Allows for social as well as psychological interpreta- tions of data. Can be useful for producing qualitative analyses suited to informing policy development. Using thematic analysis in psychology 97 methods, and demonstrate how to do ‘qualitative analysis’, reinforces this point in that his focus is largely thematic �/ but not claimed as such. 3. Some authors, such as Potter (1997: 147�/ 48) argue that one should not simply provide ‘recipes’ for qualitative methods, such as DA, because ‘a large part of doing discourse analysis is a craft skill, more like bike riding or sexing a chicken than following the recipe for a mild chicken rogan josh. . . This makes it hard to describe and learn’. While we do not disagree that the skills needed for qualitative analyses of all types need to be learned, others, such as McLeod (2001), argue that by not discussing the ‘how to’ of analysis, we keep certain methods mysterious (and thus elitist). Instead, if we want to make methods democratic and accessible �/ and indeed, to make qualitative research of all forms more understandable to those not trained in the methods, and arguably thus more popular �/ we need to provide concrete advice on how to actually do it. We are not questioning the importance of ‘non-recipe’ forms of training, but while ‘recipes’ necessarily diminish the complexity of certain methods, they are impor- tant for making methods accessible. 4. Foster and Parker (1995) suggest one way to acknowledge the creative and active role of the analyst is to use the first person when writing. 5. Content analysis is another method that can be used to identify patterns across qualitative data, and is sometimes treated as similar to thematic approaches (eg, Wilkinson, 2000). How- ever, content analysis tends to focus at a more micro level, often provides (frequency) counts (Wilkinson, 2000), and allows for quantitative analyses of initially qualitative data (Ryan and Bernard, 2000). Thematic analysis differs from this in that themes tend not to be quantified (although sometimes they may be; and Boyatzis (1998) suggests thematic analysis can be used to transform qualitative data into a quantitative form, and subject them to statistical analyses; and the unit of analysis tends to be more than a word or phrase, which it typically is in content analysis. 6. The definition by Boyatzis (1998) of latent and manifest is somewhat narrower than our identification of latent and semantic, and he identifies thematic analysis as incorporating both latent and manifest aspects. However, this results from the fact that he associates the process of interpretation with latent analysis �/ whereas we would argue that it should also be an important element of a semantic approach. 7. We are assuming that you will be working with a ‘good quality’ data corpus and data set. We would argue that ‘good data’ are defined by a particular set of criteria regarding what, why, and how they were collected, and offer rich, detailed and complex accounts of the topic. Good data do not just provide a surface over- view of the topic of interest, or simply reiterate a commonsense account. The challenge for the novice researcher is to interact with research participants in such a way that they generate rich and complex insights. Producing a good analysis of poor quality data is a far more demanding task for the analyst, although it can potentially be performed by a skilled and ex- perienced analyst. 8. See Poland (2002) for a discussion of the problems with the idea of a ‘verbatim’ transcript, and what is left out, and retained, through this process. 9. 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Willig, C. 1999: Beyond appearances: a critical realist approach to social constructionism. In Nightingale, D.J. and Cromby J., editors, Social constructionist psychology: a critical analysis of theory and practice . Open Uni- versity Press, 37�/51. Willig, C. 2003: Discourse analysis. In Smith, J.A., editor, Qualitative psychology: a prac- tical guide to research methods . Sage, 159�/ 83. Yardley, L. 2000: Dilemmas in qualitative health research. Psychology and Health 15, 215�/ 28. About the authors VIRGINIA BRAUN is a senior lecturer in the Department of Psychology at the University of Auckland, where she teaches, supervises and conducts qualitative research. Her research interests are primarily focused around women’s health, gendered bodies, and sex and sexuality, and the intersections between these areas. She is currently working on projects related to ‘sex in long-term relationships’, ‘female genital cosmetic surgery’ and ‘the social context of STI transmission’. VICTORIA CLARKE is a senior lecture in social psychology at the University of the West of England. She has published a number of papers on lesbian and gay parenting, and co-edited two special issues of Feminism and Psychology on Marriage (with Sara-Jane Finlay and Sue Wilkinson). She is currently conducting ESRC-funded research on same- sex relationships (with Carol Burgoyne and Maree Burns) and co-editing (with Elizabeth Peel) a book on LGBTQ psychology (Out in psychology, Wiley). Using thematic analysis in psychology 101
ALEXANDER (2.8) INT: right (0.5) INT: that should be us= AL: =˚okay˚ (1.4) INT: okay (0.3) INT: .hhh so (.) INT: um (1.9) INT: the the interview’s gonna go is (1.0) INT: I’ve got like a: yer know a full on interview schedule here >that I’m gonna follow and what have you but I’m< (1.0) INT: would rather it sort of went as a conversation than a (0.2) INT: than a sort of question n answer s[essio]n?= AL: [yep] AL: =˚yea˚ (.) INT: so: u:m: (1.1) INT: I’ll refer to it a bit (0.2) INT: but er if we (0.4) INT: chop about n change n n all that sort of stuff I’m I’m really don’t (0.2) INT: .hhh I’m I’m really don’t mind so (0.8) INT: tsk u:m: (0.3) INT: .hhh so we’re looking at ah friendship= AL: =m: (0.6) INT: u:m: (0.3) INT: and so a a a good way to start maybe (0.3) INT: would be to ask you to: (0.4) INT: tell me about one of your friends (0.3) INT: u:m: (0.6) INT: sort of tell the story of how you of of how you came to meet them (0.6) AL: right (.) suppose I- (0.5) AL: start with my ah talk about my best friend= INT: =okay (0.3) AL: u::m (0.2) AL: mean (.) I used to live in Austria (0.3) AL: for fifteen years and um (.) m parents separated and m my mum took us: (0.6) AL: over to England so:= INT: =m: (0.8) AL: quite strange this:: (0.8) AL: new big schoo:l I mean I was accepted in Eng- in Austria in (.) basically a ninety- five percent girls’ school which was heaven for me [there so] INT: [ha ha] ha ha [ha ha ha ha] AL: [] AL: a girl for every day of the year [.hhh] to: u:m being accepted in ((SCHOOL NAME)) which is INT: [ha ha] AL: an all boys school (0.5) INT: alrigh[t] AL: [on]ly sixth form g a allowed to girls so I was like .hhh (0.3) AL: ˚no girls˚ (.) AL: [so] INT: [ha h]a (0.2) AL: it was quite stra:nge quite a new experience s:chool [uniform] INT: [how long ago was] this INT: ago no[w] AL: [ab]out seven years ago coming up seven years (.) INT: so you were sort of in the middle of high school type (0.2) INT: pl[ace xxx] AL: [uh u::]m I’d got into year ten (.) I’d fini[she]d (.) e:r one set of school in INT: [˚okay˚] AL: Austria n (0.3) AL: came into year ten in England which .hhh we never had course work in Eng- in Austria n stuff like that so it was quite difficult s[o u]:m INT: [˚xx˚] (1.6) AL: xxx school uniform we didn’t have so it was all new experiences and (0.3) AL: out of a class of thirty I can’t remember names (0.8) AL: I just didn’t know anyone so (0.5) AL: u:m (.) one of my mate xxx was met him in our history class n xx sat next to him n he’s now my best friend you know we went out (0.5) AL: to er:m (0.5) AL: school discos n stuff like that and he took me under his wing and (.) yeah (1.0) AL: nice lad (0.6) INT: okay (0.2) INT: so how how (0.9) INT: how how d’you actually:: um (0.4) INT: meet him you met him in class I [guess] AL: [in cl]ass yes an[d in] form as well so INT: [and so] (0.4) INT: how (0.3) INT: how do you:: sort of um (2.0) INT: >how how do you< sort of pass the time with him you know when when when you guys are together (.) AL: u:m as in in school or outside (0.6) INT: both I [guess] AL: [both] well (0.5) AL: I suppose we just sit about sometimes we also sort of play f footie as you do nd ah (0.2) INT: m: (0.3) AL: u:::m (2.0) AL: he: u:m after our GCSEs xxx ah we I he had a villa in ah Minorca (0.4) AL: a:nd so it was a group of us u:m planning to go out so we >basically< we sat in er during lunchtime planning what we were going to do and (0.3) INT: ˚m˚ (0.9) AL: we just sort of went to the pub I mean my mum kicked me out (.) a:t the age of sixteen n told me to go to the pub with the lads and hh[h >it was likee you know< just (0.3) AL: stuff you know just hang around (.) meet up with some girls n stuff (0.9) INT: ˚okay˚ (.) and you still you still: (0.3) INT: see him a lot? (.) AL: ah well he’s got up gone up to ((UNIVERSITY NAME)) up there but every time time he’s down we (0.3) AL: try n meet up for lunch or at least go out for a good old night s so (0.9) AL: yeah we used to go up to Liverpool (3.0) AL: nearly what every other Friday as well (.) before that so (.) INT: okay (1.2) INT: [s]o h his family AL: [x] (0.2) INT: are over the water as well are they? (0.4) AL: u::m= INT: =or where are they based (0.6) AL: they’re: well they at the moment they’ve got a house in erm America so they are [in Ameri]ca INT: [alright okay] (0.6) AL: so but yeah I went travelling with him as well during my gap year so (.) we spent what (.) th:ree months (0.2) AL: at least (0.4) AL: twenty-four seven with him so (.) INT: yeah (0.7) AL: normally you you can’t do that with people or (.) I can’t but (0.5) AL: he’s best mate xxx xxx (0.7) INT: why not (0.5) INT: why can’t you normally with (0.2) AL: I can but you know yh I need I need other people sometimes it’s just you xx it’s gotta be someone that you’ve (0.4) AL: want to spen:d twenty-four seven with you know for a three months knowing (1.2) AL: you’ve gotta travel with them (0.3) AL: (0.5) INT: ˚xx[x˚] AL: [˚x]xx˚ (1.2) INT: it’s quite a big ask= AL: =it is [yeah] INT: [how’d it] go? (0.4) AL: amazing (.) INT: yea:h (0.9) INT: [did] you ever fight? AL: [xx] (.) AL: no (0.5) AL: [not at all] INT: [not once] (0.5) AL: not even once (0.8) INT: that’s good (0.7) AL: it’s quite a s:urprise because he’s such an annoying person [sometimes] INT: [ha ha] ha ha ha [ha ha] AL: [xxx xxx] during the history lessons he used to poke me continuously in the ah:: shoulders like (0.1) INT: ha ha ha ha ha ha [˚ha] ha˚ AL: [hhh] (1.5) INT: yea:h that’s the sort of friend you want [ha ha ha ha] AL: [m::: he’s a] middle child as well so he has middle child syndrome (0.3) INT: oh yes= AL: =m::= INT: =ha ha ha ha (1.5) INT: u:m (0.8) INT: (0.4) INT: your other friends (0.3) INT: is your relationship with them like quite similar to your relationship with this guy? (.) AL: a:h well we’ve got (.) sort of (.) I’ve got u:m (0.7) AL: there’s a group of the lads (0.5) AL: including a couple of girls but (0.3) AL: they’re part of the lads:= INT: =m:= AL: =u::m (0.6) AL: yeah there’s sort of (.) I’d say there’s about (0.2) AL: ten of us that go to the pub together but (.) they’re sort of um (0.4) AL: bit older than us qu- some of them (0.5) AL: um sort of there’s (1.0) AL: the four of us ws- (0.5) AL: him (1.8) AL: me (1.7) AL: ˚is there three of us? (.) four of us˚ well there’s (0.5) AL: we’re sort of close type of close knitted sometimes when we’re together there’s (0.3) AL: d u:s us three us four (0.7) AL: a:nd then the rest around I mean (.) sort of (0.3) AL: I see (0.2) AL: my sort of (.) a as a chosen ↑family you know f you can’t choose y-who your family is but you can choose who your friends are and so .hhh they’re sort of (.) knitted with me as u:m (0.8) AL: family in a way u::m (0.4) AL: got other sort of (0.7) AL: friends here and there which I’m really close to (0.6) AL: a:nd (0.2) AL: a couple of girls that I’m really close to and I’ve (0.5) AL: jus making new friends at the moment new friend at the moment so (1.3) INT: okay (0.3) INT: right (0.6) INT: so this this new friend how how have you met th[em?] AL: [hh]h (0.2) AL: facebook (.) well (0.2) INT: oh yes [xx] AL: [over] the internet we u:m I’m going to America (0.2) AL: over the summer (0.8) AL: for th: three (0.4) AL: over just over three months I think (0.6) AL: and I’m I’m going to ↑Camp America for the fir[st] two months INT: [˚hm m˚] (0.8) AL: u:m so it’s nice meeting all sorts of people through the:re as well getting to know them over by m MSN facebook er over the internetand then (0.4) AL: I’ve met this girl who’s erm because I’m going on a trek (0.4) AL: afterwards from er ah New York to LA (0.6) AL: for three weeks which is camping and roughing it and (0.2) AL: it’s gonna be fun and (.) INT: ˚coo[l]˚ AL: [fou]nd that ah they’ve got a blog ↑space on their webpage so I: put on (0.5) AL: saying I’ve created a grou:p in facebook you know let’s get together let’s get to know each other as we are gonna spend three weeks with each other (0.4) INT: ye:h= AL: =a::nd this girl she goes to ((UNIVERSITY NAME)) so we u::m got on really well on MSN you know (0.2) AL: wow er (0.2) AL: I’ve never got on so well so fast with someone (.) just over the internet (.) y’know (0.5) AL: I can trust her I can tell her anything n (0.3) AL: only met her once (0.4) AL: And I met I went er: for dinner with her the other day and (0.7) AL: yeah we get on like a house on fire= INT: =yeah? (.) INT: >so how I mean that must have been a bit odd< (0.6) INT: meeting her (0.3) INT: face to face not having:= AL: = b]ut (.) it’s INT: [yeah?] (0.2) AL: quite fast you know (.) got on quite well there’s no [problems at all xxx] INT: [cough cou]gh (1.2) AL: pff weird actually (0.2) INT: ha ha ha ha (1.5) INT: okay cool (0.8) INT: u:m (1.8) INT: the (0.3) INT: the first friend you were talking abou[t] AL: [m]: (0.6) INT: d’you do you reckon that’s (.) a friend for life I mean [(.) forever] AL: [yeah he’s gonna be] my best man at the wedding if I ha have one so (0.2) AL: definitely= INT: =yeah (.) AL: definitely be- er best mate for life (0.4) INT: but is he gonna be going back to the states with his is he going to be mo[ving back AL: [ah: no: INT: there with his family xxx] AL: xxx] his family sort of move about they’re never settled a[nywhere so::] INT: [alright okay they haven’t like] emigrated they’re just (.) working there for a while or so[mething xxx] AL: [well they’ve] (0.3) AL: they’ve got a one year visa (.) out there s- and it depends on the youngest son who’s (1.3) AL: he’s just done his eleven plus so he must be what ten ↑eleven (0.4) AL: and he failed that so they’re hoping he might pass his el er: (0.8) AL: twelve plus so they might go back to England n .hhh (.) they sort of lived in Spain for ages and (.) moved to England for the schooling and then (.) they liked the idea of u:m (0.6) AL: America because their oldest son was gonna try out and go to college out ↑there (0.6) INT: ˚okay˚ (.) AL: u:m but they didn’t take him into the basketball team so (0.2) AL: he went back to England and they’d just bought this house (0.2) AL: just out of random they saw it liked it and just thought oh let’s buy it (1.2) AL: ˚s˚ (0.4) AL: so: (.) INT: as you do .hhh ha ha ha (0.2) AL: if you’ve got the money why not hhh (0.2) INT: yeah (0.6) INT: so he’s he doesn’t have plans to go over the states with them he’s [gonna] AL: [n:]:o AL: he[’s g] INT: [gonna stick] in the UK (0.2) AL: well (0.5) AL: he doesn’t want to stick in the UK he just wants to (.) he doesn’t like the UK too much the weather (0.2) AL: doesn’t suit him (0.4) AL: he lived in Spain for so many years s[o:] INT: [ye]ah (0.4) INT: yeah (0.4) AL: xxx xxx= INT: =>so how do you think< I mean: if he (.) heads off somewhere sunny and you end up staying in the UK or something how how do you think (0.8) AL: I’m [not planning] to s:tick around in the UK myself [xxx xxx xxx xxx xxxx xxx INT: [xxx] [>but I mean you may< end AL: xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx] INT: up in different different parts of the world] or something like that= AL: =yeah the er th:e world is a small part (0.2) AL: w- place now (0.2) INT: ˚m[:˚] AL: [u]::m (0.4) AL: you know there’s always the internet there’s pho:nes I mean (1.6) AL: he’s in Edinburgh which is as far away as it could be er um (0.2) AL: Australia (0.2) INT: yea[h] AL: [I] mean= INT: =yeah (0.8) AL: so >I mean< (0.3) AL: whilst I was living in Austria (.) u:m (0.4) AL: my cousins and ↑I (0.2) AL: quite close and they moved away sort of (1.1) AL: ˚.hh˚ (.) car distance you needed to travel so we didn’t see each other as oft but we could have done (.) and when I moved away they what they said was (1.1) AL: we could have seen each so often (0.7) AL: but we didn’t and now that the: (0.2) AL: I’m living so far away they want to see me (0.3) AL: so (0.7) AL: distance doesn’t really matter it’s just the effort you put into it I reckon (0.7) INT: yeah (0.6) INT: okay (2.6) INT: u::m (2.6) INT: tsk so this this chap you met at school (0.2) INT: >did you I mean what were your other< school friends like (1.5) AL: some were a pain (0.2) AL: hh[h] INT: [h]a ha ha ha ha= AL: =.hhh (0.3) AL: u:m (0.2) AL: I haven’t had a easy life with friends I’ve always been sort of u:m (.) bullied I never knew u:m (0.4) AL: tsk (0.9) AL: some of my friends: yr: took ad got taken advantage of I’m quite a (0.6) AL: a nice guy you know does everything for everyone doesn’t day no: a:nd people took advantage of me so= INT: =yeah AL: I sort of learnt the hard way (0.2) AL: u:m so there are a few (0.2) AL: folks like that but (0.8) AL: xxx (.) I always got on tried to get on with everyone (0.3) AL: u::m (1.5) AL: I (0.2) AL: can’t dis- I I (0.3) AL: fail to dislike people in a way there’s only very rare people that I dislike and that’s for a (.) very good reason you know they (0.7) AL: if they upset my family or something = INT: =yeah (0.7) AL: that’s it (.) but otherwise (1.2) AL: I get on well with people in general (1.5) INT: wha (.) what sort of um (1.0) INT: things do you mean by: you were taken advantage of (1.8) AL: u::m hhh (1.2) AL: just helping them in all sots of er (0.2) AL: work u:m (0.8) AL: >th th they’d< hang around with me when it suited them (0.5) INT: m[:] AL: [n] then just drop me like (0.7) AL: I was nothing er:u:m (0.6) AL: n the next thing they’d be (0.2) AL: bullying me teasing me and (0.8) AL: I wouldn’t know why I was: (0.5) AL: in place u::m (2.0) AL: but (0.7) AL: na:h (0.4) INT: >and yet and yet< (0.2) INT: >these were people who that you sort of< brought up in the context of friends as [well so that] was AL: [] (1.2) AL: quite confusing sometime[s] INT: [y]eah (0.5) INT: ˚yeah˚ (2.8) AL: ˚n: but˚ (0.6) AL: I don’t know it’s (1.5) AL: been (1.6) AL: with them with the my friends that I’ve got now w is we’ve got a sort of a banter going on you know and we can say anything to each other and (.) which (0.4) AL: if:: we say to another person could be quite hurtful n quite shocking n (0.5) AL: people see it xxx xxx (0.7) AL: yeah how can you let him talk to you like that n I go ˚puh˚ I give him as good back and we know that it’s only jo:king and (0.6) AL: there’s this girl in university and honestly she can say anything to me and I’d just laugh it off because I know she’s joking (.) you know if you say it in one way words may hurt but if only if you let them and if you mean it in a hurtful way (0.9) AL: so (.) INT: but she doesn’t (.) AL: no (0.5) INT: what sort of things I mean (1.6) AL: oh crumby stu- er stupid things n you know c quite insulting things xxx xxx xxx how stupid I am and xxx and rubbish at this and this that and th- I don’t know it’s just (1.3) AL: just petty things sometimes that get to people: ˚and it’s just˚ (0.7) AL: ˚xx˚= INT: =xxx in the context of the friendship [it just] AL: [oh yeah] (1.0) AL: just any[thing really] INT: [just forms] part of= AL: == INT: =how you speak to each other= AL: =exactly x[xx] INT: [ye]ah (0.3) INT: okay (0.9) INT: u:m: (1.7) INT: ↑how many of your other school friends are you still in touch with (2.8) AL: hhh (1.9) AL: u:m (4.7) AL: xxx xxx quite a few xxx (.) go out every so often u:m just mean (0.7) AL: th:ree of them majorly (0.8) AL: which is my best fr- er (0.4) AL: three friends u:[m] INT: [˚hm] m˚ (1.1) AL: one’s (0.4) AL: sort of whenever he had a girlfriend he always s:tuck to his girlfriend sort of (.) distanced himself from the group (0.5) AL: so (0.2) AL: (0.7) INT: when he’s single (0.7) AL: u[:m no no] this one I: think that’s gonna last for some r reason (.) u:m he’s been INT: [ha ha ha ha] with her for: a few years now u:m (1.1) AL: um when I [go] INT: [and you] still see him he’s not sort of isolated [xxx] AL: [he’s] not ↓isolated [no but] INT: [okay] AL: I s still see him every so often u:m (0.5) AL: over facebook I like to sort of give people a a line every so often (0.3) AL: u:m (0.4) AL: I tend to like to keep in touch with people but I’m rubbish at it (.) INT: hhh hhh ha ha h[a] AL: [I] intend to say I will phone (.) will do that I mean I phoned up erm a friend .hhh that I went to school with a:nd er she said oh we need to keep in contact more often yeah yeah .hhh that was January (0.3) AL: h[hh] .hhh haven’t heard from her since INT: [ah] (0.3) INT: so in four months that’s: (.) not brilliant= AL: =no [hhh] INT: [ha ha] ha ha ha (.) okay (0.2) AL: .hhh (0.8) INT: and there must be I mean there must have been other friends that you’ve sort of drifted away from as well? (.) AL: y:eah u:m (0.3) AL: I mean obviously having lived in Austria for fifteen year fourteen fifteen years I [had e]:r I’ve had INT: [˚m: ˚] (0.5) AL: a few friends out there .hhh I mean one of them she: (0.4) AL: funny enough (.) when she wa:::s: (.) ˚b˚ (0.2) AL: we’d just finished junior school so we were eleven she moved to ↑England a Filipino girl her family moved to London (0.5) INT: ˚okay˚ (0.3) AL: a:n:d (0.2) AL: we (.) kept in contact ˚b˚ by letters and that sort of er when I moved to England (.) I met her once xxx that was five years later (0.9) AL: u::m (.) n we met (0.2) AL: (0.7) AL: she now has moved to the Philippines to do a dentistry course and I haven’t seen her (0.3) AL: in ten years and we almost lost conk tact (.) totally (0.2) INT: ˚m:˚= AL: =as in I used to send letters to: her family and everything and never got anything back weirdly enough I’d find her online somewhere and think (0.3) AL: FANTASTIC she’s there (0.5) AL: and then: lose contact again with her and then out of the blue oh hello I’m now on facebook as well (1.1) AL: so u::m that’s one friend I sort of (0.5) AL: on and off contact (0.2) INT: ˚yeah˚ (0.3) AL: u:m my best friend from junior school I used to be in contact with but (1.0) AL: n I know I can find him on the internet in their newsletters because he’s er um um (.) ↑a weight lifter for Austria (0.9) AL: u:::m but (0.7) AL: ˚ps˚ I’ve lost total contact with him I’ve got his number (0.3) AL: so I can try and pho:ne his family when I’m over (1.1) AL: but u::m there’s one best friend he’s not internet (.) conne- he doesn’t like the idea of internet (.) and stuff like he’s a bit backwards= INT: =ha ha ha ha ha= AL: =er::um (.) him I phone every time I’m in I’m in Austria and try (.) and meet up at least once ˚s:o˚ (0.5) INT: do you go back to Austria quite a bit? (0.2) AL: u:::m I (0.5) AL: used (0.5) AL: it’s more difficult now since my dad died last year (0.7) AL: u:::m (1.4) AL: but u:::m I stayed at I I’m going back in two weeks time (0.8) INT: ˚okay˚= AL: =u:m staying at my grandparents out there so u:m (0.5) AL: I’m (0.5) AL: intending to go at least once (.) or twice a year used to go twice a year with my dad (.) to visit my dad ah um .hhh (0.2) AL: now (0.8) AL: sort of once or twice a year (0.7) AL: ˚x[xx xx]x˚ INT: [okay] (0.4) INT: and you intend to: they’ll they’ll be friends that you: hook up with when you’re over there? AL: um yeah I try to yeah (.) er::m (0.2) AL: like my one mate and then (.) this one girl I can just drop a mail and (0.2) AL: we try and meet up (1.2) AL: ˚s[o˚] INT: [a]nd will you will you see a lot of them when you’re over there or just like see them once and that’[s it] AL: [ah] it’s quite difficult I always u:m when I went over (1.1) AL: I would see my dad we had (0.2) AL: f:ull programme you know every single family member wanted to see you from the (0.4) AL: we were doing something el[se] INT: [ye]ah (0.7) AL: a:n:d (0.4) AL: I’d just have to say whoa I want to see one of my friends and I’d have to put them in an evening and one for a day and it’s (0.8) AL: it’s quite mental but (.) INT: ˚m:˚ (0.2) AL: think this time I might have bit of a more of a relaxed time (1.0) AL: ˚n˚ be able to do what I want (0.6) INT: yeah (0.3) INT: .hhh so when you see when you see them and you haven’t seen them in a while (0.7) INT: how d how does that (0.4) INT: how does that pan out (1.5) AL: just as if we’d seen us er each other (0.8) AL: ˚f˚ er a few days be↑fore= INT: =o[kay] AL: [it’s] just (.) absolutely normal just cat[ch up] on (.) er: .hhh (.) stuff because INT: [˚xxx˚] AL: the one guy (0.3) AL: I really didn’t have any hardly have any contact with people in Austria friends and we s sort of catch up (.) and things and gossip a:n:d (0.5) AL: what’s going on an[d] INT: [˚m]:˚ (.) AL: I mean I think (0.4) AL: because of (1.3) AL: xxx I was gonna meet up with him ˚m˚ (0.7) AL: las:::t time I was over in Austria (0.3) AL: ˚which is a y:::ear now˚ (1.4) AL: ˚xxx xxx and a half ago˚ (1.6) AL: a:nd w the day that we were meant to meet up his parents (.) a:h sent him somewhere that he needed to go y so we he didn’t have time to meet up (1.1) AL: u:::m (0.8) AL: I was gonna be there (0.3) AL: I was xxx xxx xxx with my dad (0.5) AL: so (0.9) AL: I was only there for a week and it was really really mad mayhem so (.) couldn’t meet up with him then (0.4) AL: did try to but um he d- again didn’t have t↑ime (0.8) AL: and then I went over with: my then (0.4) AL: (0.3) AL: ˚he didn’t have don’t know we didn’t have time˚ or something like that (0.6) AL: kind of didn’t work out (1.2) AL: so (0.3) AL: I d- (0.5) AL: I haven’t seen him for (0.5) AL: nearly two years now so (0.5) AL: definitely try- I need to phone him after my exams and say by the way I’m coming over to Austria make some time for m(h)e= INT: =yeah (.) AL: .hh[h] INT: [ye]ah (0.4) AL: but once I went over and he’d organised a a mini class reunion for me (0.4) AL: a[s a sur]prise which was really good INT: [oh xxx] (1.1) AL: see er someone actually greeted me and I said (0.4) AL: and knew my name I was like (0.5) AL: who the hell are you (0.4) AL: look look at him and he said you don’t recognise me do you and I said no (0.5) AL: he said who he was and I was like flipping heck (0.7) AL: I mean he he was a s- like this when I s- u::m (0.4) AL: when he was standing in front of me the last time I saw him he was quite a brick you know he he was [a good] body shape and a pain in the arse didn’t like [him] INT: [yeah] [ha] INT: ha ha ha ha ha [ha ha] AL: [he’d] totally changed he was (.) totally: laid [back and a nice] guy INT: [cough cough] and I was like (.) wo:w (0.3) INT: yah (0.4) INT: yeah (0.6) AL: so yeah (0.2) INT: ˚cool˚ (2.1) INT: so the people that you do lose contact with what (0.7) INT: w:hat’s (1.3) INT: what are the sort of things that (0.5) INT: end up meaning that you lose contact with them (0.6) AL: ˚jus˚ (0.7) AL: l:iterally lack of ti:me (0.3) AL: [literal]ly u::m INT: [˚m: ˚] (1.5) AL: I’ve literally only fallen out with one friend (0.3) AL: before and that was (.) because of he was being so childish and so stupid it was on his accord (.) Man United beat e:r Southampton which meant them being relegated (0.9) AL: a:::nd then the Monday afterwards (0.6) AL: every day in the common room I asked every Monday I’d say oh how was your weekend (0.7) AL: and he’d just put his head down and someone j- just looked at me and shook his head and I thought sh:i:t ha .hhh (0.5) AL: refused to s- talk s- sit next to me refused to talk to me (.) absolutely (.) haven’t spoken to him since (1.9) AL: he wouldn’t accept any apologies from me nothing (0.3) AL: this is we’re talking about an eighteen year o:ld (0.3) AL: male person who (1.7) AL: okay I cramped his pri:de a bit (1.8) INT: hhh hhh (0.2) AL: so puh (0.7) INT: oh dear (.) AL: m (2.1) INT: so when you came to university (0.7) INT: how did you go about meeking meeting (0.3) INT: like new friends xxx (0.4) AL: erm= INT: =>or did you have any< friends (.) from school that came to u[niversity with you?] AL: [n::::]o= INT: =so [you it] was like completely new blank slate sort of thing AL: [no] (.) AL: blank slate totally u::m well on the first day I walked in (.) u::m I was standing there in front of the room I was like hhh .hhh ˚cra:p˚ hhh bit (0.4) AL: new (0.2) AL: (1.4) AL: and this guy (0.6) AL: cockney (0.3) AL: guy u:m he started talking to me and (0.5) AL: ˚s˚ (0.7) AL: hhhf someone’s talking to me (.) great= INT: =ha ha ha ha ha= AL: =and we was sat in the same room and he got taken out because he was in a um different tutor group in the end and I had to stay in the room and I sat next to this girl (0.7) AL: u::m (0.3) AL: and (0.6) AL: who: started talking to me and sh- er we’d realised that we’d been (.) at (0.3) AL: a ↑party together once (1.1) AL: and had a er mutual ↑friend (0.8) INT: ˚okay˚= AL: =so u:m she had a few friends that were with her so (.) the lot of us went to the um (1.4) AL: ah what’s it called at the fair the the freshers’ fair (.) INT: ˚hm [m˚] AL: [˚x]x˚ (0.2) AL: where I totally lost them (0.6) AL: xxx so I went home and er:m (1.3) AL: I sort of: sat next to them and then this Irish girl that one u:m that takes the mickey out of me she s:at there by us as well and >sort of< .hhh (0.7) AL: went down to the er The Excelsior pub a:n:d sort of (0.3) AL: welded together through booze (.) INT: hhh hhh hhh (.) AL: always works fantastically I think we were (.) the first time we all went there is like (0.5) AL: fiftee:n of us (0.6) AL: a:nd just having a few drinks getting to know each other and (.) INT: ye[ah] AL: [you] know (1.0) AL: sort of still that that group of we sort of speak every so often and say hi n (0.2) AL: you know (.) we know each other so (1.3) AL: it’s kinda cool (0.4) INT: xx makes them sound like they they they haven’t ended up being your like close friends here but [you still s]ort of= AL: [n:::] AL: =no I mean I can talk to them (0.4) AL: whateve[r I want] about I mean INT: [˚m:˚] (2.0) AL: >it’s< (2.0) AL: the girl that u:m (1.4) AL: xxx xxx I can (.) yeah we’ve got a sort of a close-ish friendship I reckon (0.5) AL: u:m (1.7) AL: I mean I’ve babysat for one of my mates who was the first guy his erm girlfriend’s got a ↑kid (0.6) AL: a:n:d (1.0) AL: they’re um very picky about p- er choosing people who are babysitting [n s]o INT: [˚hm˚] (0.4) AL: um I’ve been (0.2) AL: I’ve babysat for them a couple of times so (.) INT: okay (0.3) AL: I suppose (0.9) INT: there’s a certain level of t[rust in play there and yeah] AL: [] (1.2) AL: there’s some good friends there I mean (0.7) AL: definitely since that with my dad xxx xxx I’ve note they’ve er there’s been quite a lot of support there from them as well so (0.3) INT: yeah I was wanting to ask about that you [say] (.) you were saying (.) you AL: [˚m: ˚] mentioned your dad died last year= AL: =yeah he [died last] Augus[t] INT: [last year] [s]o (0.6) AL: so (.) u:m (0.6) AL: it was quite a shock (0.9) AL: because it wasn’t expected he took his own life (0.6) AL: [a::nd] so INT: [˚okay˚] (1.2) AL: I was like (0.3) AL: whoa it was like two days before my brothers were meant to go and see him as well (0.3) AL: and um I was meant to introduce my girlfriend to him (0.5) AL: well then girlfriend and um (1.8) AL: yeah it was kind of a strange experience I mean I needed my friends: (0.2) AL: quite a bit when I came back (0.9) AL: u:::m (1.4) AL: and (.) talk just talked to them and you know there’s u:m 0.6) AL: it’s a very difficult subject to talk about (0.3) INT: m:= AL: =u::m (0.7) AL: well not just personally I don’t mind talking about it it’s just (0.7) AL: some people don’t like to: (0.7) AL: listen to it (0.3) AL: a:nd talk about it and I’ve been quite lucky with the people that I’ve met here in university also my best friends (0.9) AL: e:r I’ve had quite a bit of support from them (1.3) INT: so they’ve been okay to talk about it?= AL: =they’ve been absolutely fantastic yeah one of my mates actually said to me u:m (0.6) AL: in fact recently a few months ago he said oh (0.2) AL: didn’t realise you er were okay to talk about it I said (.) pff no problem about it you know and he went oh fine you know (0.5) AL: and then sort of (0.5) AL: chatted about my dad er to me because he’d met him once so (0.9) INT: okay (1.1) AL: so that’s (0.8) INT: so (0.3) INT: when your dad died that you say that was August so (0.7) INT: u the university hadn’t (0.2) INT: sort of: (0.7) AL: uni hadn’t s[ta:rted] INT: [you hadn’t uni hadn’t] started then (0.3) AL: u:m no well that (.) which meant that u:m I was I wasn’t clear on when I was coming back to university and everything so u:m obviously I needed people to sort stuff out for me (0.3) INT: okay (0.2) AL: u:m (1.1) AL: like registration: an[d] u:m getting booklets and stuff like that INT: [yeah] (0.5) AL: cos= INT: =˚m[::˚] AL: [u:]m I (0.2) AL: c went back again (.) in September over ↑registration period s[o I’m] missing a INT: [yeah] couple of days (0.8) AL: u:::m (0.9) AL: so (.) obviously you need people to um (0.3) INT: ˚m[:˚] AL: [t]ake a few (.) notes n stuff [like that] INT: [.hhh so] were you in touch with your university friends during the summer (.) AL: yeah (.) INT: you were okay so so so it wasn’t like um (0.4) INT: you had to hunt them down or you didn’t sort of [see them for months] AL: [oh: no not at all] no I fr u::m (0.5) AL: just give em a bell I mean when we got our results through I was sitting there er with my mates having a few drinks an:d I got a phone call (0.8) AL: and it was ah: we’re just oh yeah what did you get and stuff like that so (.) yeah it’s not as if oh (1.2) AL: six months five months of not (0.2) AL: no contact some of them yeah but some of them no but (0.9) AL: u::m yeah I mean (0.2) AL: through the internet as well now and (.) stuff (.) yeah (.) INT: ˚m˚ (0.8) INT: you’ve talked about that quite a lot the internet and facebook and MSN and that (0.6) INT: you: (.) obviously (0.4) AL: I’m an addict hhh= INT: =ha ha ha ha h[a] AL: [hon]estly five minutes b[efore I walked] into this room I thought I’ve got INT: [y y you] (0.2) AL: ten minutes let’s f- log on and s[ee what’s going on] INT: [ha ha ha ha ha] ha ha= AL: =.hhh whilst I was doing my revision here’s my laptop with facebook running here’s my book (.) n my notes (.) INT: yeah (0.2) AL: it’s (0.2) AL: I don’t know it’s a way of life now it’s just (1.2) AL: ˚x˚ (0.6) INT: and are you mostly in touch with people the people that you know on line (0.2) INT: are they mostly people that you also know (0.5) INT: u:m face to face (0.4) AL: most of them yeah (0.2) INT: b[ut not] all of them AL: [xxx] (0.4) AL: well (0.4) AL: only because I’ve d- I I’m gonna meet all of them (0.3) AL: of u:m[:] INT: [o]kay[ alright] AL: [>because xxxcould you give me andon’t know he’s a< (0.6) AL: year seven and he thinks he:’s the world and (0.7) AL: whereas my brother was friends just friends with him (.) he changed he was rude he li:ed he was totally character changing (0.3) INT: ˚m:˚ (0.2) AL: and you see he got away and he became quite nice and he spent a lot of time with this other guy and who’s now s (.) the three of them then (.) sort of the two of them (.) got friends with (0.2) AL: again with that (.) guy (0.9) AL: a:n:d (0.4) AL: it escalated turned on my brother (1.8) AL: and (0.5) AL: I just saw my lif::e (0.3) AL: rolling through (0.6) AL: past me again through my brother (0.2) INT: ˚m:˚ (.) INT: And it’s like (1.2) AL: it’s sort of c- I can now I’ve (0.5) AL: gained the experience I can take him aside and say (0.7) AL: this is right this is wrong (0.2) AL: you know (0.4) AL: can help him (1.0) AL: u:m again I can (0.3) AL: myself then now see (1.1) AL: who is actually my friend (0.9) AL: ah:::r (0.7) AL: I suppose I’ve ˚n˚ I’ll never lea:rn properly (0.2) INT: ˚h[a ha˚] AL: [nev]er do (0.7) AL: u::m (0.3) AL: cos I always see the best in people (.) but (0.5) AL: you know (0.2) AL: it’s (0.5) AL: the trust thing I think is (0.4) AL: a bit of a high standard I don’t trust people as soon as I meet them (0.7) AL: I need to gai- I need to gain their tru[st xxx xxx] INT: [whereas you used t]o (0.2) AL: ye[ah] INT: [used to] just trust them (2.6) INT: so do you (0.5) INT: if you think about those experiences now and you think about the friends that you’ve currently got (0.4) INT: are there sort of people who you think might sort of (0.7) INT: be like that if if given the chance? (1.7) AL: ˚I hope not˚ (0.2) AL: no: hhh .hhh NO definitely not (1.1) AL: my best mate no the the group that we’ve got now na:h (0.7) AL: definitely not (0.8) INT: so how’s the group the you got n:ow different from (0.3) INT: the groups of friends you’ve had in the past (1.1) AL: u:m= INT: =cos you talk about them in quite a different way= AL: =yeah (.) I mean (.) d- I (1.1) AL: I left Austria when I was fourteen so (1.1) AL: the groups of chi:ldhood friends there’s di[fferent] friends whereas you know INT: [˚m:˚] (2.5) AL: I needed I was desperate fru- ha I needed a group of friends in England so it it got a lot tighter er .hhh we spent near enough ev- we’d spent every day together n everything and the weekends we spent together we went to the cinemas we er went to the .hhh as we got old enough well (0.9) AL: in my mi:nd I was old enough because [I was brought] up INT: [˚ha ha ha˚] (.0.2) AL: l[iving in ↑Austria] INT: [no matter what the law] says ha [ha ha ha ha] AL: [you can] drink from the age of sixteen in Austria= INT: =okay= AL: =↑no matter what (.)˚th˚ the (.) border changes I was allowe[d] INT: [h]a ha ha ha (.) AL: mummy ↑said so (.) I can (0.3) INT: ((coug[hs))] AL: [u:m] so (1.7) AL: that was fine xxx so I needed a sort of tighter group n that we just (0.5) AL: knitted up tightly (1.5) INT: tsk but some of the pe- some of the friends from school were (0.5) INT: w:ere people who then let you down (0.4) INT: afterwards? (0.6) AL: i[n e]r INT: [˚xx˚] (0.3) AL: in Austria yeah= INT: =>oh the oh so [so that was sort of stuff that happened xxx< okay alright right] AL: [th th th th that was in Austria that they were in Austria] the English I’ve not really had too much problems in England with friends (0.2) INT: okay (.) AL: as too much (1.3) INT: alright (0.4) AL: I mean I s::till see o:ld school friends walking about that I’m not really in contact with and it’s sort of alright there and this that and the other and just (0.5) AL: a quick hello and (0.3) INT: yeah (.) AL: ˚so˚ (0.4) AL: ˚never really have any problems˚ (0.6) INT: ˚okay˚ (3.9) INT: ↑so (2.1) INT: (1.5) INT: friendship (0.6) INT: actually mean to you (1.0) AL: trust (0.9) INT: ˚yeah?˚ (0.5) AL: u::m (0.5) AL: tsk you’ve gotta r- be able to rely (0.9) AL: on them (1.5) AL: er:: (1.5) AL: I suppose (1.7) AL: you’ve gotta (.) you (0.3) AL: yourself aren’t (.) just relying on them you need to be able to say (0.2) AL: >you know< (0.7) AL: this is my best mate you’ve gotta turn round and say .hhh (0.4) AL: he’s the same he (.) I’m the same to him so (0.9) AL: you’ve gotta be able to (0.9) AL: say (0.6) AL: I will (.) take (0.4) AL: >responsibility< I will not tell anyone about this I will be there for them (.) when they need me (1.1) AL: you(h) so i- it’s it’s a two way thing (0.2) AL: you know (0.8) AL: if he (0.2) AL: needs you (0.6) AL: vice versa (1.3) AL: so: yeah it’s (.) I think the main aspect is trust (3.1) INT: okay (0.8) INT: ˚cool˚ (4.3) INT: gonna have a quick go through and make sure we haven’t mi[ssed anything] out AL: [˚xxx xx˚] that I was supposed to be looking at (3.6) INT: um (4.1) INT: tsk I think we’ve covered (0.2) INT: ˚er˚ I think we’ve covered the (0.5) INT: the main points (.) AL: m[:] INT: [IS] THERE ANY IS THERE ANYTHING that (0.2) INT: that (.) erm (0.2) INT: that’s occurred to you? ˚while we’ve been talking˚ (0.6) AL: e[rh] INT: [abou]t about friends and friendships xxx stories of friendship n what have you that that we’ve not really (0.5) AL: tsk(.h) I suppose (1.4) AL: as I’ve been speaking you (0.5) AL: it’s as you said you know you’ve had friends here and there you can always say friends come and go: but you know (0.5) AL: the ones that are really important to you (0.5) AL: you should always try to kee:p (0.2) AL: in touch with n tre- keep around you (.) INT: ˚m:˚ (.) AL: cos you never know (1.0) AL: when you next need them (0.3) AL: because I reckon (0.9) AL: at the end of your life (1.9) AL: you might have your kids n everything (0.3) AL: ˚but˚ you know (2.4) AL: you’ve er in the same b- you you’ve never got someone really (0.2) AL: else in the same boat (0.8) AL: that’s sort of say (.) INT: ((coughs)) (0.5) AL: because (0.4) AL: you there’s always a a (.) a difference yes people have gone through the same things but once you’ve sort of lost your parents your your older generation n you’re the oldest generation in the family (0.4) INT: ˚hm m˚ (0.5) AL: you haven’t really got anything to compa:re (.) with (0.5) AL: you always you ha- can’t like now you I (.) say to my mother AH: this that n the other they other I hate life this is CRAP .hhh n she said oh I went though this you know it’s difficult I guess (.) this that n the other you know .hhh she’s there to give you advice and you know (0.2) AL: talk through her life experience n (0.2) AL: any other er adult can do that (0.7) AL: but (0.3) AL: once you’ve lost that (.) I reckon you need your friends because you going through the same things at the same time (1.0) AL: cos (0.8) AL: yeah you speak to w- I speak to my grandparents about l:ife n stuff like that but (0.2) AL: ˚when I’m that age I don’t think I’d remember that much˚ (0.4) AL: it’s [difficult] enough now to remember th- just [as much] INT: [hhh] [ha ha ha] (0.4) AL: er::m (0.7) AL: so y- I reckon you nee:d them throughout your whole life (0.7) AL: and if you stick with someone that’s been throu:gh y- (0.6) AL: with you for your whole life (1.5) AL: you can sit back and say oh:: just had a laugh about (.) y- when you were younger what you got up to n you know just see life pass n (.) you know help each other through the the later stages of life as well you know (1.3) INT: .hhh so the friends (0.2) INT: that (0.3) INT: say you went to school with over here (0.2) AL: m: (.) AL: u:m (0.7) INT: even if I mean they haven’t ended up at the sam:e uni as you or anything [like that] but they’re obviously they’re still at uni most of them I gue[ss?] AL: [m:] [y]eah (0.5) INT: u:m so you’re still sharing that sort of experience= AL: =m: (0.5) INT: are there ↑friends (0.3) INT: that you had at school who haven’t (0.3) INT: gone on to uni they’ve like gone on to job[s or something] like th[at?] AL: [.hhh] [u:]:m (.) one friend er she’s um (1.4) AL: she’s j- Open University she went on to work (0.2) AL: u:m (0.6) AL: and then realised that she (0.3) AL: could (.) do needed >a a< a degree to help her along and so (1.0) AL: she:’s u:m (0.6) AL: done an Open n- University degree (0.3) AL: and (.) working at the same time (.) INT: okay (0.9) AL: u::m[:] INT: [so] her life’s quite different to the yours [sort] of a full time student= AL: [y:eah] AL: =yeah she she moved over to Liverpool not long after ↑I did and (0.5) AL: weirdly enough we only er meet up really on the ↑Wirral when everyone’s round we’re so cl- we’re literally like ten minutes away from each other and (.) do not see each other .hhh (.) INT: yea[h] AL: [e]:r:m but (1.4) AL: yeah u:m (1.3) AL: as in some of the older ones (.) have got jobs (0.3) AL: they um (0.2) AL: ˚never went to some of them didn’t go to university˚ they’re now starting university because they’re realising that (0.3) AL: they can’t do anything else (0.3) AL: w- without a degree (0.8) AL: u:::m (0.9) AL: but (0.9) AL: I think the majority of them did go to university because (0.3) AL: u:m ((SCHOOL NAME)) was a grammar school who sort of tried to um (0.6) AL: enforce university on you (1.2) AL: u::m (1.9) AL: ˚n I think yeah my friends all went˚ (0.9) AL: ˚my close friends anyway˚ (0.4) INT: ˚m˚ (0.5) INT: ˚okay˚ (0.6) INT: ((sniff)) yeah I was I was sort of (0.7) INT: I guess I was fishing a bit (0.3) INT: u:m to see if (1.1) INT: maybe that friends that (0.3) INT: didn’t end up in the same sort of situation tended to be: the ones that you sort of tended to drift away from more but (0.4) INT: doesn’t seem[ to] be really= AL: [well] AL: =there is one girl who never went to university and I got on really well in school n we always said s I haven’t seen her since school n we’ve always said oh oh we need to do (0.2) AL: meet meet need to meet up meet u[p and] er: INT: [˚m::˚] (0.7) AL: she actually got married last August (1.4) AL: ˚she’s˚ younger than ↑me (0.2) AL: but (.) thinking about it my mum was what twenty-one when she married as well and but (.) INT: ye[ah] AL: [I] I can’t imagine me getting [married I (.)] I’m still a ki:d inside INT: [ha ha ha] (0.7) AL: I can’t get (.) I no way e:r:m but yeah she’d been with the same guy since she was what f::ift↑een= INT: =really (0.4) AL: and u:m yeah I got invited to the wedding (0.4) INT: ˚m:˚= AL: =obviously I (0.2) AL: couldn’t go b- being in in August and my dad al- and= INT: =alright okay (0.4) AL: I still haven’t met her she’s moved in xxx xxx o:h we need to meet up n oh come round to my place ˚and it’s like no˚ (0.3) AL: ˚ no can’t af-˚ (0.2) AL: I haven’t emailed her for ages and then there’s one girl who’s a deejay (1.0) AL: and she jets around the world and she’s busy (.) you know (0.4) AL: in her business and earning her own money and her own life xxx I see her every so often (0.3) AL: ˚but˚ (0.2) INT: ˚m:˚ (0.9) AL: yeah= INT: =is it (0.4) INT: is it sort of ↑harder when you see her because: (0.2) INT: your lives are so ↑different or does it not matter= AL: =˚it doesn’t matter˚ [see I] I: INT: [it doesn’t m] (0.7) AL: I always describe myself as a (.) bit of Blu ˚you know I mould myself into this˚ right situations I mould myself in with people n you know I’m easy going you know (0.2) AL: you want a boozy group of friends well I can a be a boozy person don’t expect (.) me to drink (0.4) AL: too many spirits n stuff but I’ll stick with the beer and I’ll be rowdy and er boozy or (0.3) AL: I can be the person who sits lies back a:nd relaxes watches a film or plays some Playstation as well I (1.1) AL: I don’t mi:nd as long as I hang around with some people and they’re nice enough to hang around with (1.2) INT: so depending on the circumstances you: (0.8) INT: almost like a different person? (0.4) AL: I wouldn’t say a different person I’m always me (0.4) INT: so h[ow] what’s what’s the difference= AL: [u::m] AL: =the difference is that (.) u::m (1.4) AL: the group situation is different as in (0.7) AL: .hhh I suppose I am different once I’ve had a (0.4) AL: u::m (1.1) AL: but (0.5) AL: u::m (1.6) AL: no I: (0.2) AL: I’m (0.4) AL: I’m the sam:e me (0.4) AL: I’m still u::m (0.7) AL: it’s just (0.8) AL: I’m okay in many situations I I (0.3) AL: I enjo:y drinking as much as I enjoy relaxing I enjoy just ta:lking and (.) you know different people diff different situation (.) different people like different things and (1.7) AL: I suppose I (0.8) AL: could (0.4) AL: meet a bunch of strangers who are set in their way who are looking for a room mate and I say well (0.7) AL: I just fit in (0.2) AL: and I’d ju[st] go along with them (.) and have no problem with it INT: [˚m˚] (0.9) INT: ˚okay˚ (0.4) INT: .hhh you said you said something quite early on in the interview that I wanted that I was interested in (0.7) INT: about (0.4) INT: friends being the family that you choose= AL: =m: (1.0) INT: ((coughs)) (0.6) INT: and I I like the idea of (0.4) INT: of choice in friendship but I suspect it’s not all that (0.6) INT: it’s not all that simple because then when you ta:lk about the f- the bunch of friends you ended up with (0.4) INT: um (.) they happened to be people who spoke to you: on the first day of university and all that sort of stuff and it doesn’t see:m to me .hhh as much of a choice (.) AL: .hhh well I(h) hhh (0.2) AL: mean (0.9) AL: I I could say you you (1.2) AL: it’s fate who you meet (.) it’s (.) but you still choose if you want to be friends with them (.) INT: ˚okay˚ (0.4) AL: u::m (0.4) AL: I mean (.) u (1.8) AL: yeah you I think you (0.4) AL: you nee- (0.2) AL: hhh (1.0) AL: it i:s in a way you’re right (0.3) AL: you (0.4) AL: you meet a a load of people in your life I reckon (0.9) AL: and (0.2) AL: you: (0.3) AL: either you choose I don’t know if it’s choo- er you choosing or it’s fate or something (0.3) AL: but u:m (1.3) AL: >in a way< (0.3) AL: you try n (0.2) AL: find (.) the ones that are right for you (0.6) AL: I mean this girl that I’ve just met on the internet I mean I’ve never got on as I said so well with [someone] just INT: [˚m:˚] (0.6) AL: by briefly knowing them (0.7) AL: u::m (0.3) AL: xxx (0.4) AL: as if I know her inside out now (.) u::m (0.9) AL: but (0.3) AL: I said to her it’s (0.6) AL: absolute >there was< if my dad had not died (0.7) AL: I would not have met this girl cos I wouldn’t have ha:d they money to go (0.5) AL: on this trek (0.6) AL: u:m if my brother would have (.) decided to go on a trek with me (0.8) AL: I wouldn’t have gone on the same tre:k as her (0.5) AL: there’s so many coincidences I mean we nearly me:t each other at the s- at Camp America orienteering she was in the same room (0.3) AL: I was sitting at the back of the room and she was sitting a few rows in front of me (1.0) AL: and we n- didn’t meet I mean (0.8) AL: it’s s:trange how people (.) are in the same room (.) INT: ˚m:˚ (0.3) AL: don’t meet but end up weirdly knowing each other (.) somehow through the internet (1.4) AL: so: (0.5) AL: in a way it’[s >fate] that I know her and I< know that INT: [yeah] (0.5) AL: I’m ho:ping it means something really special a special friendship something that (0.6) AL: we need to we’ll have to something’s gonna happen where (0.6) AL: for some reason we need each other or something (.) I don’t know (0.3) INT: ˚m:˚ (1.0) AL: so (2.1) INT: is there a possibility that something romantic could happen there?= AL: =a::h (.) no (0.3) AL: I [thought] at first before I met her over the internet I mean she’s a she’s a really= INT: [˚no˚] AL: =good er I really get on with her she’s very similar she’s as clumsy as me she’s [er xx .hhh] this that n the other we’re so similar except when it comes to eating= INT: [ha ha ha ha ha] AL: =she’s vegetarian and very very picky on what she eats she she’s a vegetarian that doesn’t even eat salad (1.0) INT: (h)okay= AL: =y:es very stra:nge u:m that’s the only difference I reckon er one of the only differences and um (0.6) AL: tsk she u::m (0.8) AL: but (0.4) AL: >and she’s a< good looking girl you know she’s got the two combinations to be the perfect girlfriend I thought to myself (.) and I met her instantly I knew no (0.7) AL: not the vibes she was giving me it was (.) ˚just˚ (0.3) AL: it wasn’t the:re there was nothing= INT: =it was just friends?= AL: =yea:h (0.3) INT: ˚okay˚ (1.4) AL: ˚so˚ (0.9) AL: so (0.5) AL: I mean (.) who knows what’s in the future but (0.5) INT: yeah (0.2) INT: ˚yeah˚ (0.7) INT: ˚I mean you’re gonna be˚ (0.2) INT: .hhh with her and a whole bunch of other people for quite a while on the trek so (.) AL: yeah= INT: =˚xxx˚= AL: =there’s gonna be thirty [xxx xxx] INT: [↑what what d’]you erm (3.7) INT: >↑what< (1.7) INT: qualities in other people do you look for in your friends I mean (0.3) AL: tsk .hhh (1.0) INT: y[ou you talked] about trustworthyn[ess w w ] w w wha[t what] what else:= AL: [hhh] [yeah tru] [˚oh˚(h)] AL: =w[hat else] INT: [what else is] important to you (0.9) AL: obvi- that they’re friendly (0.6) AL: and nice u::m (0.7) AL: that they accept me (.) hhh .hhh for who I am u:m (1.6) AL: u:↑:m (1.1) AL: ˚>I guess.hhh I g-< (0.2) AL: similar interests I think reckon u:m= INT: =okay (0.3) AL: because my best friend and I have a interest in travelling both of us I mean I got tra- u:m I always liked the idea of travelling but once I went travelling round Europe and America I just got (.) bitten by the travel bug and .hhh (0.2) AL: I just want to spread my wings and see the whole world I mean I want to (0.6) AL: taste and drink myself through it so (1.8) INT: hh[h] AL: [I] don’t know it’s similar interests is always a good w-= INT: =yeah= AL: =one (1.4) INT: ˚okay˚ (2.0) INT: .hhh ↑alright well I think I’m done= AL: =m: (0.4) INT: er I’ve sort of gone off script at the end but I don’t mind xxx ha ha .hhh so thanks for that= AL: =no problem [at all] INT: [u:]m (0.4) INT: stop the video and I’ve got one other thing for you (6.0) *END OF RECORDING* PAGE 2
LOUISE (2.2) INT: ˚okay˚ (2.5) INT: right hhh (0.2) INT: are those boots not incredibly hot in this weather? (0.4) LOU: no: they’re too comfortable a ha ha ha (1.0) LOU: I [live] in them now hhh he [he] INT: [˚my˚] [my] folks sent me a pair for uh my in-laws sent me a pair from New Zealand= LOU: =yeah (0.5) INT: um (.) sort of big sort of (0.4) INT: bloke’s sized (0.2) INT: Ugg boots (0.6) INT: and they’re I mean they’re toastie but I couldn’t [wear] them now LOU: [yeah] (.) LOU: could ya ha (0.5) LOU: strange the weather outside today isn’t it (0.3) LOU: s (.) really like (2.2) LOU: hum[id n] INT: [not] liking it at [all yest]erday was great= LOU: [n:o] LOU: =it was beautiful yesterday [but] INT: [but] not liking this at all (1.0) INT: so: ↑okay (0.3) INT: what I’d like to do is just run this so:rt of like a conversation >I mean I’ve got< (0.4) INT: I’ve got an interview schedule here which I’ll be going through (3.1) LOU: right= INT: =u:m (0.4) INT: so that’s that’s what I’m looking at= LOU: =yeah (.) INT: um (0.2) INT: just so as you know >you can have a look at it< if you like (0.6) INT: u:m and it’s got sort of a bunch of questions but it’s more like (0.3) INT: various areas that I want to ask questions about abou[t friendship and I’d] rather it LOU: [yeah that’s xxxx] INT: was more a conversation than a question and answer thing= LOU: =>yeah< (0.2) INT: so I will: (.) go off on si:de track[s an]d whatever and I really I really don’t mind= LOU: [alright] INT: =that (1.7) INT: um what’s good is if (0.9) INT: if when we’re ta:lking you can actually sort of (0.5) INT: come up with like examples like specific examples (0.7) INT: like telling stories about you know with this friend this h[appened and all a]ll that LOU: [right (.) okay] INT: sort of stuff and that [makes] a it makes it more interesting and more like LOU: [hm ↑m] INT: personally relevant?= LOU: =yeah sure= INT: =and um: (0.2) INT: and and also (0.6) INT: sometimes it can really help with working with the data after[wards] so LOU: [yeah] (0.8) INT: u:m: (1.0) INT: tsk okay (0.4) INT: all:: right (1.2) INT: are you sitting comfortably? (said in a ‘comedy’ voice) (0.2) LOU: yeah (0.3) LOU: fine (0.2) LOU: hhh ha ha .hhh= INT: =U:m (1.0) INT: so I think (.) o:ne one of the things we can we can start with is if you th:ink of (.) u:m like o:ne ↓friend of yours (0.2) INT: l[ike a a] close friend LOU: [˚yeah okay˚] (0.2) INT: u:m (0.7) INT: a:nd (0.4) INT: just tell me: a:h >how you met?< (1.3) LOU: how we met= INT: =ye:ah (.) LOU: well: (0.2) LOU: we: live in ((HALLS OF RESIDENCE NAME)) ↓halls I don’t know INT: (nods) (.) LOU: if you know where that is .hhh a:n:d (0.2) LOU: she moved into our flat (0.3) LOU: a week after everyone else because she didn’t like the people she was originally living with (.) INT: okay (0.4) LOU: so ↑I first met her in our kitchen (.) unpakin (0.7) LOU: then it were .hhh hhh (0.2) LOU: it was quite strange because I though oh (0.4) LOU: who’s she? ↑ahh cos we[’d only] been there a week so we’d already made like a INT: [˚ha ha˚] little (0.4) INT: rig[ht ˚okay˚] LOU: [bo:nd type] thing (0.2) INT: how many [people] in the flat LOU: [˚n then˚] (0.2) LOU: five (0.2) INT: ˚okay˚ (0.3) LOU: n so she was like the fifth person to move in (0.7) LOU: n then we just started chattin ↓really and we found (0.2) LOU: quite a bit to talk about and then it went from th↑e↓:re (0.3) LOU: ˚so like˚ (0.3) LOU: now we’ve formed like quite a good close friendship (0.3) LOU: cos we both smoke you see so that was our little (0.4) INT: he [he he he he ˚yeah˚] LOU: [bonding thing it] was like (0.8) LOU: when we went out it was like d’you want to go outside for a fag n then (0.5) LOU: that was [how] we started to bond r↓eally INT: [˚xxx˚] (0.2) LOU: through that (0.5) LOU: ˚so˚ it can have its (0.3) LOU: you know advantages smok↑in [ha ha .hhh] so ha ha [.hhh but] (.) yeah (.) now= INT: [ha ha ha xxx] [yeah absolutely] LOU: =we’re (.) quite close really I’m goin over to Ireland to see her in summer because that’s where she lives ˚for a couple of weeks so˚= INT: =↑okay cool (.) LOU: ˚it’s [really good˚] INT [where about]s? (0.2) LOU: e:m tsk (0.7) LOU: not called is it ((LOCAL PLACE NAME)) (0.3) LOU: ((LOCAL PLACE NAME))? (.) ((LOCAL PLACE NAME))? (0.4) LOU: just outside Derry ˚I think it is˚= INT: =˚okay˚= LOU: =˚she lives˚ (0.4) INT: Northern [Ireland?] LOU: [˚so˚] (.) LOU: yeah N[orthern Ireland yeah] INT: [˚xxx xxx xxx xxx] xxx˚ (0.9) LOU: ˚s[o˚] INT: [o]:h nice one (.) LOU: I kno(h)w= INT: =yea:h (0.2) LOU: gets me a holiday anyway [doesn’t it ha ha] somewhere to stay hhh .hhh= INT: [ha ha ha ha ha] INT: =˚cool˚ (0.5) INT: so you’ve kno:wn her since s the start of this [year] xxx xxx xxx [Sep]temberish LOU: [˚xxx˚] [˚xxx˚] INT: xxx (0.2) LOU: feels like I’ve known her years though really= INT: =really?= LOU: =yeah (0.4) LOU: like I know more about her than friends back home I think (0.4) LOU: cos I think it’s cos you live together so= INT: =˚yeah˚= LOU: =you start to see sides of people you don’t (.) generally see (0.4) LOU: ˚in others˚ (0.7) LOU: cos you’re und under each others’ skin aren’t ya (.) so= INT: =˚yeah yeah˚ I know it [can be quite difficult]= LOU: [it’s crazy] LOU: =it is difficult but we’ve (.) we’ve learnt to live with each other (.) cos we know when we need our own space n (.) we know when (0.5) LOU: it’s time to be (0.7) LOU: ˚like with each other xxx xxx˚= INT: =.hhh when you are with each other what (0.2) INT: I mean w what d’you get up to what d’you do? (0.5) LOU: like in the day or:: (0.5) INT: we[ll] LOU: [js] generally (.) INT: generally [in the day] in the evening or whatever (.) both LOU: [>well we generallyxx you gonna< be] staying with: LOU: [in ((LOCAL PLACE NAME))] (0.3) INT: >some of the people you’re friends with now?˚alright [okay˚how how< how in touch are you:: with th[em:] LOU: [very] LOU: cos we:’ve got a very (0.4) LOU: close group of friends there’s like six of us (.) including myself girls (0.4) LOU: an (.) we’re the type of friends where we see each other every day (0.5) LOU: we do stuff together every day so we’re still (0.2) LOU: very close (0.3) LOU: like I’ve been going home most weekends to spend time with them (0.2) INT: ↑alright [xxx] LOU: [n] like I ph↓one them in the week n (0.5) LOU: it’s really strange cos I’ve got such a close group of friends back ho:me but I have here that’s why: at first I didn’t (.) really want to come (0.4) LOU: cos I was a bit sca:red of (0.3) LOU: making new friends= INT: =˚yeah˚ (.) LOU: but it seems to have gone the opposite way (0.4) LOU: ˚x˚ (.) INT: ˚xx˚ (0.6) LOU: cos we do depend on each other a lot back home (0.6) LOU: like us six (0.6) INT: ˚hm:˚ (0.7) LOU: so (0.2) LOU: it was [scary xxx xxx] INT: [and have your have] your:: (1.1) INT: friends from college met your uni friends (0.7) LOU: e::m [>yeahsince< then as well or:: (.) LOU: e:::m wel[l they we’ve not really (.) been up n]o: they’ve not really had the INT: [xxx xxx had the opportunity] LOU: opportunity since that day (0.7) LOU: but if (.) cos s:ometimes one cos they only live like an hour away one will pop up for the night and then they’ll speak or sit in the kitchen n (.) ˚have like a cup of tea n everything n˚= INT: =˚okay˚ (.) LOU: ˚so it’s˚ (0.2) LOU: ˚it’s really quite cool˚ (0.5) LOU: the girls are good who I live with like that they’re very: sociable as well so they won’t just (.) ignor:e (.) someone [they’ll] come in ˚n˚ INT: [˚yeah˚] (0.6) LOU: nice to meet yer ˚der der der so it’s co[ol˚] INT: [˚x]xx cool˚ (0.2) LOU: it’s really good (1.7) INT: so wh↑at was it like (0.5) INT: coming ↓here you said you were a bit sort of er:a:h[ah] LOU: [˚y]eah˚ (0.7) INT: u[:]m= LOU: [cos] LOU: =I wasn’t gonna: (.) I changed me mind about going to uni (.) over summer (0.6) LOU: and then I got a summer job (.) and I really didn’t like it it [was not where I INT: [ha ha ha ha] LOU: wanted] to be at ↓all (0.3) LOU: n I thought the only way I’m gonna get to where I wanna be is if I go to uni (0.5) LOU: but I was (.) I was just scared of being l↑one↓ly (0.3) LOU: I think ↓˚more than anything˚ (0.6) LOU: cos we are: really close back home (0.5) INT: ˚x[xx˚] LOU: [so i]t was one of them where: (1.0) LOU: I just ↓thought I was gonna be on my own make no frien:ds (1.5) LOU: it wa[s] INT: [w]ere you worried about losing contact [with xxx xxx xxx ˚college] LOU: [yeah definitely] INT: friends˚= LOU: =with cos (0.4) LOU: two of them didn’t go to university (.) n three of them have done (0.5) LOU: so it wa[s] INT: [˚r]ight˚ (1.5) INT: but that[’s not made a] difference reall[y?] LOU: [˚xxx xxx˚] [n]o↑: not at a↑:↓ll (0.3) LOU: like the t one of the girls (.) who stayed back ho:me at first she was a bit (0.2) LOU: ooh you’re all makin new friends you’re gonna forget about us (0.5) LOU: at the start she was a bit (0.6) LOU: >but th[enbut is she< making new friends (0.3) INT: through wor:k n all that sort of stuff xx[x?] LOU: [er] ↑yeah yeah but she works with (0.2) LOU: ↓older people really (0.2) LOU: [where she w]orks INT: [˚ri:ght˚] (0.2) LOU: so: (0.3) LOU: >she does< (0.2) LOU: stay with us >but she’s got a< boyfriend as well so that sort of hel:ps so when we’re not there she’s spending time w[ith hi]m INT: [˚x˚] (1.0) LOU: so (.) she’s settled down a lot more now she just fe I think she felt a bit (0.3) LOU: ↓left out cos we were a:ll moving on with our lives and she felt like she was stuck there: (0.8) LOU: ˚but˚ (0.3) LOU: ˚she’s c[ome to te]rms with it now n˚ re(h)alised INT: [˚m hm˚] (1.0) LOU: ˚but˚ (0.6) INT: >that sounds like< (1.9) INT: when you said you wanna sort of stay in touch with some of these university frie[nd]s (.) you know LOU: [yeah] (0.7) INT: for (0.4) INT: ever or [or what] I: it sounds like sort of (.) the same with the ↑college LOU: [x yea:h] INT: friend[s xxx] LOU: [yea]:h definite[ly] INT: [these] are (.) like lifelong friends?= LOU: =definitely ˚yeah˚ (.) INT: and before coll↑ege like at school? (0.4) LOU: it was (.) the sa↑:↓me (0.3) LOU: f[riends xxx] college at school:l cos we all went to the [same college] INT: [cough cough] [you all went to the same INT: school] and then the [same] college okay= LOU: [yeah] LOU: =so it was [really g]ood and there’s e:rm a couple of people from schoo:l (.) like INT: [all right] (0.2) LOU: it’s a group of lads who I’ve kept in touch with as well (0.3) LOU: cos they’re like ↓really close friends (0.3) LOU: but it goes to show you when you move on who your friends ar:e (0.7) LOU: cos (0.3) LOU: they’re the people who wanna stay in touch and who make the effort to see yer (0.5) LOU: and you make the effort to see them n it makes you rea[li]se (.) it’s like [xxx] INT: [˚xx˚] [cos >I] INT: mean there must have been other< people who you were INT: [friends with who have sort of fallen by] the way[side] LOU: [tsk yea:h (.) but they’ve just like] [fizzle] yeah (0.3) INT: why what sort of (.) what leads to that fizzling (1.0) LOU: I think it’s mo:re a case of (1.2) LOU: people (.) doin different thin:gs (0.5) LOU: and then you don’t see each other often so you run out of (0.3) LOU: li:ke a bit of conversation really and then (0.3) LOU: >you just< (0.3) INT: ˚hm[:˚] LOU: [n]ever see them cos I’m he↓re (0.5) LOU: hardly the people when I go home the the main friends who I (.) spend my time with cos I’ve not got a lot of time (.) like for the weekend or something (.) INT: ˚hm:˚ (0.6) LOU: it’s rea[lly] INT: [>ca]n you think of< someone who’s >who’s like that that< maybe like a school friend that you’ve (1.4) INT: e[::r] LOU: [yea:]h (1.0) INT: when >when when< did you last see them? (0.8) LOU: I actually he↓:↑r (0.4) LOU: cos we were really good friends at high school but we went to different colleges (0.5) LOU: n (0.5) LOU: she didn’t really associate with (.) the group of (.) you know the girls I’ve m[et xxx] xxx xxx INT: [yeah] (0.5) LOU: and I sa:w her I met up with her over Easter for a drink (0.5) INT: ˚ye[ah˚] LOU: [it] was rea:lly good it was (.) but I hadn’t seen her for (.) since like schoo↑:↓l (.) from then (0.4) INT: oh r[ight okay] LOU: [so we went fro]m being like really really close to then nothing (0.4) LOU: ˚at ↑all:˚ (0.4) INT: had you both ch↑anged in that time though? (0.3) LOU: e::m she’d dyed her hair (0.3) INT: ha [ha ha ha ha] LOU: [but ha ha .hhh] ha ha .hhh (.) personality >but< I think she’d done a lot of growin up (0.3) INT: yea[h] LOU: [cos] when we were at school she was very (0.5) LOU: like (0.2) LOU: bad tempered (1.0) LOU: like could (clicks fingers) you know (.) but (0.4) LOU: th- s:tubborn as well but she (.) she admitted that as well she said I was (0.2) LOU: terrible at school (0.5) LOU: moo:d swings n stuff so she’s d[one a lot of] growin up INT: [˚xxx˚] (0.7) LOU: even though she’s only five foot nothing sti(h)ll [ha ha ].hhh she’s still dead INT: [ha ha] LOU: small (0.7) INT: but it w↑asn:’t awkward seeing her (.) cos I thought oh xx (0.5) LOU: cos we had loa:ds to talk about >cos we hadn’t seen each other for two years but< (0.2) LOU: other people you see (0.6) LOU: and it’s like >they’re not< interested so you’ve got (0.2) LOU: ˚nothing to talk about˚ (0.9) LOU: ˚s[o˚] INT: [th]ey’re not interested in? (.) LOU: like what you’ve been doing they’re just (0.6) LOU: like HI n then walk away (0.4) INT: ˚xxx˚= LOU: =>they’re not< they don’t stop for a conversation n stuff (0.7) LOU: but then in the same respect I could stop them n (0.6) LOU: ˚it’s˚ (0.4) LOU: quite strange isn’t it? (.) yeah (.) INT: yeah (1.1) LOU: ˚it’s really quite strange˚ (1.5) INT: yeah I know I recognise these things [you’re saying] (.) yeah LOU: [yeah] (1.1) LOU: ˚so like˚ (0.5) LOU: where did that little bond go? (0.3) LOU: ˚it’s wei[rd˚] INT: [˚y]eah˚ (0.7) INT: ↑are you friends with people from also (.) um: (0.6) INT: from class (.) and er from (0.5) INT: the course as as [well] >other than< >other than< your your= LOU: [yeah] LOU: =it’s (0.5) LOU: i[t’s quite strange] INT: [fifteen strong p]oss[e] LOU: [y]eah (.) cos it’s li(h) ha ha .hhh it’s my own fault really because I’ve got the:m (1.0) LOU: I don’t really make as much effort as I should have done with class mates which is one of the things I’m gonna try and do next year (0.4) LOU: but there’s (0.2) LOU: two girls who are (.) I see quite a lot (0.4) LOU: like we don’t just (0.5) LOU: ˚go˚ like we went out for each other’s bir:thday n: [stuff like that n] INT: [˚alright okay] yeah˚ (0.5) LOU: phone each other up n (0.3) INT: ˚x˚ (0.6) LOU: arh exams n hhh (0.4) LOU: but that’s ↑only like two of them and there’s another gi:rl who lives in my halls who does n (.) I saw her last night actually (0.3) LOU: so there is a few people that I speak to but I never (1.6) LOU: like (.) text em n: say you coming out tonight apart from like them two (0.2) LOU: ˚who I’ve˚ (0.7) INT: ˚yeah˚= LOU: =˚made friends with˚ (.) but one of em (0.2) LOU: went to my coll↑ege (1.1) LOU: so it was [xxx like yea:h so I kn]ew who she wa:s [but] INT: [alright so you sort of knew them] [>but] you weren’t< ↓friends INT: with her at [college you just just sort of knew to see] LOU: [no: we’re just (.) like acquaintance type] thing [˚yeah˚] INT: [˚xxx xxx˚] (1.1) LOU: ˚so˚ (1.1) INT: and were they people >xxx like< research methods cl↑ass or some[thing like] LOU: [yeah] tha:[t?] LOU: [y]eah] (0.4) INT: so that’s the [one where you actu]ally see mo[st of them I guess] LOU: [xxx xxx xxx] [yeah where you see like in] LOU: lectures it’s difficult cos you just walk in sit down n walk back out (0.3) INT: ˚hm m[:˚] LOU: [>s]o it’s< (0.2) LOU: difficult >you can’t really< s have a conversation with people ˚can yer˚?= INT: =˚yeah˚ (0.3) INT: ˚no˚ (.) LOU: but in the tutorials it’s a lot easier (0.9) LOU: ˚x[x]x˚ INT: [˚x˚] (0.4) LOU: ˚make it˚ that’s what I’m gonna try and do next year make more of an effort ˚with people˚ (0.8) INT: ˚okay˚= LOU: =˚in our course˚ but then (0.9) LOU: it’s wei:rd because then I spend most of me time (0.4.) LOU: with people (1.0) LOU: in ha:lls (0.9) LOU: ˚so˚ (0.8) LOU: plus I’ve already= INT: =˚hm m˚ (.) LOU: made a bond with them n (0.2) LOU: they’re my friends now (.) so (1.2) LOU: ˚be quite˚ (0.4) LOU: ˚st[range˚] INT: [you’re talk]ing about them like they’re sort of two different groups? (0.4) LOU: yea[h] INT: [of] friends as >it it< feels like tha[t? xxx yeah?] LOU: [yeah definite]ly (0.6) LOU: like (0.2) LOU: people on my course are a different group to people ˚who I live with˚ (0.6) LOU: ˚definite[ly˚] INT: [˚hm] m˚ (0.8) LOU: I can act differently with them as well (0.5) LOU: like [I act di]fferently with people on my course than I do INT: [yeah?] (1.0) LOU: ˚with˚ (0.5) INT: like how so (0.7) LOU: like I’m more:: (0.4) LOU: more confident with people (0.5) LOU: I live with (0.3) LOU: you know to be yourself like sometimes you hold back don’t you n (.) INT: ˚yeah˚ (.) LOU: things I’m like that with people on my course >I I< have to get to know them before I let them get to know me (0.6) LOU: it’s quite strange (0.3) LOU: don’t know why I do it but eh heh .hhh hhh (0.2) LOU: it’s like if I go in to you know when you start a new job? (0.5) INT: yeah (.) LOU: tsk and everyone’s already for:med (0.4) LOU: their friends that’s when I’m more: (0.6) LOU: like self conscious n (0.3) INT: ˚hm [m˚] LOU: [a] bit (0.9) LOU: cos you’re going into a new group whereas at uni it’s quite easy because (0.2) LOU: everyone’s in the same position (0.5) LOU: so (0.9) LOU: you just (0.2) LOU: be yourself that’s all you can be (0.2) INT: yeah (1.1) INT: do you get that feeling (0.4) INT: that (1.0) INT: people already knew each other on the course more than in halls where everyone was strangers? (0.3) INT: or was it the same sort of thing= LOU: =it was the same sort of thin:g it’s just (0.7) LOU: I see (0.2) LOU: them people more: so it give me [more] time to INT: [˚yeah˚] (0.6) LOU: n plus we were out socialising so (0.2) LOU: and when you drink[ you get a] lot more confidence INT: [˚hm m˚] (0.3) LOU: to just (1.1) LOU: chat really .hh[h] hhh INT: [˚yeah˚] (0.3) LOU: ˚so˚ (0.2) INT: >I mean< (0.2) INT: yes you do >I mean has has that< bee:n (.) sort of quite an important part of (0.3) LOU: yeah= INT: =meeting people and all that?= LOU: =the socialising’s side [cos the first] (.) day we moved in the first thing we done INT: [˚xxx˚] LOU: was (0.3) LOU: opened a bottle of wi:ne n (1.8) LOU: chatted n then went out >cos you’re just< (0.3) LOU: jus more loose with yourself aren’t yer?[ ˚ yer like˚] INT: [yea]h (.) yeah (.) LOU: not afraid to say stuff (0.2) INT: ˚x˚ (.) hard to do that in le[ctures] LOU: [yea]:h definitely [ha ha .hhh] INT: [ha ha ha ha] ha (0.6) LOU: takes a good couple of hours where in lectures you haven’t got that time have [you it’s like two minute]s ha ha .hh[h] INT: [˚no xxx xxx xxx˚] [˚x]x[x˚] LOU: [s]o (0.7) INT: ˚xx˚ (.) LOU: can’t really drink either can yer ha ha (0.2) INT: we↓:ll (0.3) INT: I hope not h[a ha ha ha ha ha] LOU: [ha ha ha ha ha ha] (0.5) LOU: .hhh (1.2) LOU: ˚x˚= INT: =um (2.3) INT: >you you talk about< (0.9) INT: like sort of making pla:↓ns for n:ext year >n I [mean you] see you’ve< (.) brought LOU: [yeah] INT: up next year ˚w˚ like twice once is moving into (.) LOU: yeah (.) INT: moving into a house (.) n like finding (0.3) INT: house mates n all that sort of stuff (0.7) INT: um n that sounds pretty s that’s all pretty sorted? (.) LOU: yeah (.) INT: >how many xx how many are< they g gonna be in the house? (.) LOU: there’s (0.4) LOU: two there’s two houses of three where we’re next door to each other (.) s[o three of us are] in one n three of us are in the other INT: [all right okay] (0.4) LOU: girls (0.2) LOU: cos we thought six girls in one house and one bathroom (1.0) LOU: no wa(h)y ha ha .hhh just wouldn’t work would it really (.) s[o] INT: [n]o it doesn’t= LOU: s[o we] thought if we live next to each other we’re still together but INT: [˚xxx˚] (0.3) INT: two bathroom[s] LOU: [ye]ah exactl[y] INT: [˚y]es˚ (0.8) INT: ˚h[m˚] LOU: [s]o (0.3) INT: one of my first digs was (0.2) INT: two guys and eight girls with one bathroom (0.8) LOU: nightmare (0.3) INT: big bathroom but doesn’t matter [ha ha ha ha ha] LOU: [yeah ha ha ha] .hhh (.) so that was all right (0.2) LOU: but I’m thinking next year maybe (.) I want to live in a bigger house because (.) now’s the only opportunity (0.2) LOU: you’re gonna get to live with (0.5) LOU: that amount of people (0.2) INT: ˚hm˚ (0.6) LOU: so I think next year I’m not gonna (0.3) LOU: th:ink about the bad things >˚I’m gonna think about the good things< n˚ (1.0) LOU: cos this year it was like .hhh not enough bathroom spa:ce (0.2) (the following utterance is a kind of ‘extension’ noise; an ‘and so on, and on’ type utterance) LOU: xxxxxx (0.7) LOU: ˚whereas next year I’m just gonna be˚ (0.9) LOU: ˚go for it˚ (0.6) LOU: but then the work’s (0.6) LOU: the good thing about (.) that is (.) cos there’s only three of us we’re gonna do our wor:k (0.7) INT: yeah (0.3) LOU: we’re not gonna be distracted or: (0.7) INT: how’s that been this year? (1.0) LOU: e:↑:m not too bad really cos when I’ve got work to do I go to the library (0.6) LOU: so that I shut myself away n (.) spend all day there (0.3) INT: ˚h[m˚] LOU: [˚n˚] (0.4) LOU: everythin but >it’s just at< ni:ght (0.6) LOU: like you’re tempted to go out when really should get up ˚in the morning n do˚ it’s just (1.4) LOU: n then we go round n watch TV together n (0.5) LOU: you can [end up] being there all night ˚n˚ INT: [˚yeah˚] (0.5) LOU: ˚when you’ve got things to do but˚ you kn you know when you’ve gotta do something so you know when (0.5) LOU: like (0.2) LOU: enough’s enough (1.2) LOU: ˚really˚ (0.3) LOU: well I do anyw[ay so] hhh ha ha .hhh= INT: [yeah] INT: =you looked a little glum saying that [ha ha ha ha] LOU: [>I know< ha ha ha] (0.4) LOU: .h[hh] INT: [much] rather be going out [(.) ha ha] ha ((interviewer uses ‘comedy’ voice)) LOU: [but hhh] (0.5) LOU: you know when you’ve gotta do something don’t yer (.) when [something’s] gotta be done INT: [˚xxx˚] (0.8) INT: hhh[ xx] LOU: [it’s like] with revision I stayed in for two weeks n (1.0) LOU: like just pf focused on that (0.3) LOU: didn’t really see much ˚of anyone˚ (0.6) LOU: ˚n it’s benefited really˚ (.) well I hope so ˚find out˚ (0.4) INT: [find out soon enough yeah] LOU: [xxx xxx ha ha .hh]h soon find [out] INT: [xxx] xxx were your other friends of the same sort of (0.2) LOU: yea[h] INT: [m]indset ˚x x x˚ where [everyone xxx] LOU: [especially] in our flat it was like right (0.2) LOU: >like wh if one of us woke up earlier than the others we’d< wake each other up n (0.9) LOU: have break[fast] n then we’d INT: [˚okay˚] (0.2) LOU: ˚revise˚ (0.4) INT: so it’s actually quite supportive= LOU: =yea[h it was really] INT: [rather than being a] distraction (.) LOU: yeah it was really goo[d] INT: [˚ye]ah˚ (0.5) LOU: everyone was like that ˚really˚ (0.6) LOU: and we’d have little breaks together: n (1.8) LOU: ˚like every couple of hours n stuff˚ so it was really good (0.2) INT: ˚xx˚= LOU: =that’s why I didn’t go to the library really >cos I thought< if I go the library I’d just be sat there thinking .hhh (0.2) LOU: I wonder what they’re doing ha ha ha ha .hhh bu[t it was really good n then] INT: [xxx xxx know they’re just INT: sitting] at their own[ de]sk doing their o(h)wn [thing and that’s not that LOU: [˚yeah˚] [yeah exactly] INT: inte]resting after all (0.3) INT: h[a ha ha] LOU: [askin each] other questions n stuff so it was real[ly go]od INT: [˚yeah˚] (0.2) LOU: it was quite helpful (0.6) INT: but you’re not n ne th there’s no one in your: flat that’s on the same course or anyth[ing] LOU: [n]:[o] INT: [so] you weren’t like sharing >˚wo[rk with them or] anything okay˚< LOU: [no] (1.0) INT: .hhh ↑um (.) talking about like f:riendship ↓more generally? (0.4) LOU: yea↑h (0.8) INT: ˚w˚ (0.4) INT: (0.2) INT: to you to be friends with someone? (0.3) LOU: everything I think (.) really (0.9) LOU: li:ke (2.0) LOU: e:r (0.4) LOU: it’s jus f- s- (0.5) LOU: just (0.2) LOU: I’d (0.9) LOU: sit (0.2) LOU: with someone cos I h↑ate to be on my ow↓:n (0.5) LOU: I’m one of those people who I like to be round people and interacting [with p]eople all the time so it does mean quite a lot to me INT: [yeah] (0.6) LOU: plus yer I think ↓you need friends it’s like a necessity in life (0.7) LOU: like you nee::d (0.8) LOU: jus f[or xxx] INT: [what do you need friend]s for? (0.4) LOU: like (0.8) LOU: suppo↑:rt (1.) LOU: ˚n˚ (0.5) LOU: someone to rely ↑on n trust and just someone to have (0.6) LOU: a good t↑ime with n spend your life with really (.) LOU: isn’t it? (0.9) LOU: ˚like˚ (.) I’d rather (0.2) LOU: spend my life with some (0.8) LOU: someone than on my own (0.4) INT: ˚m:˚ (0.6) LOU: so it’s quite impo[rtant to me] INT: [.hhh have there] been have there been times this year when you’ve needed (0.3) INT: support from your friends (1.1) LOU: e:↑::m (0.6) LOU: I think it was when I was coming to uni ↓really (0.6) LOU: that was the main (.) cos I needed to know (.) that they’re still gonna be (.) like my friends back home are [still gonna] be there n INT: [˚okay yeah˚] (1.3) LOU: ˚definitely˚ (.) INT: ˚ye[ah˚] LOU: [but ]nothing serious has really happen:ed (0.2) LOU: YET anyw(h)ay touch wo[od where I nee]:d INT: [touch wood hhh] (0.4) LOU: ˚really need them˚ (0.4) LOU: but I just need em for ↓everyday ↑things (0.6) LOU: like they just (.) >mean quite a lot to me< my friends do (0.8) LOU: they like me family really (0.7) LOU: like an extended family (.) s(h)o (0.7) LOU: ˚to me˚ (1.1) LOU: so I find it quite sad when I see people who (0.5) LOU: are quite lonely n stuff a- (0.5) LOU: cos for me that would be the worst situation to be in (0.9) LOU: like (1.3) LOU: don’t know about yourself but (0.6) LOU: it’s very (0.5) INT: yeah (2.5) INT: yeah I mean there’s always a couple (.) n [I guess] I guess you see them you LOU: [yeah] INT: see them n[ xxx course] xxx n all that sort of stuff they don’t [seem to] engage LOU: [like in yeah] [they jus] INT: [with peo]ple ˚xxx˚ stuff LOU: [yeah] (0.7) LOU: it’s quite sad really I just (0.4) LOU: like our flat mate I do try n make the effort with her cos I just think (0.3) INT: this is the [the quieter one yeah] LOU: [must be yeah must] be so hard for her (0.6) LOU: cos we’re all quite (.) bubbly (0.3) LOU: characters n (0.6) LOU: ˚x˚ (0.4) INT: n is she unhappy? (0.6) LOU: she doesn’t seem to ↓be (0.2) LOU: cos I’ve spoken to her about (0.3) LOU: th↓ings l↑i:ke (0.5) LOU: how are you finding it here n stuff n she (0.2) LOU: quite l↑ikes it (0.3) INT: ˚m[:˚] LOU: [she]’s on- thinking about changing her course next year (0.4) LOU: she’s not too (0.2) LOU: settled with the course but she seems okay (0.6) LOU: n she’s living with friends next ye↓ar (0.3) LOU: cos I was worried she’d be on her own again in our [ha:ll]s INT: [yeah] (0.3) LOU: ˚so I spoke to her about that˚ (1.4) INT: ˚good okay˚ (0.9) INT: UM (3.3) INT: can you th::ink o↓:f: (1.4) INT: like (.) a particular (0.3) INT: um act of kindness (0.7) INT: that that a friend (0.9) INT: has e:r (.) has done for you or >sort of [something aobviously couldn’t be there cos at university we’ve had exams n stuff so it was just like little phone< ca:lls (0.3) LOU: to like (0.2) LOU: show your support n stuff (2.5) LOU: li[ke you] get the same back as well INT: [what] (0.6) LOU: so [it’s not] just li↓:ke I’m giving giving giving your getting INT: [yeah] (1.0) LOU: ˚you’re getting support back as well˚ (0.4) INT: and you find that with all your friends it’[s sort of equally give and tak]e LOU: [yeah definitely yeah] (1.1) INT: what what does it what does it ↓ (1.0) INT: like t t >sort of< (0.4) INT: to (1.2) INT: support a friend what what’s: >I dunno know< what’s involved with that (0.2) LOU: it’s it can just be a conversation (0.4) LOU: or even just li:ke >a little bit of< affection (1.1) LOU: n the look they give you that they know (0.7) LOU: something just saying like it’s gonna be all right (0.4) LOU: ˚it’s like˚ just affection really (0.2) INT: ˚hm˚ (1.4) LOU: cos we are quite close we do like sit n cuddle n stuff (0.2) LOU: like (0.4) LOU: which you don’t ↓normally see but (0.4) LOU: us girls we’re like (.) quite close in that (0.7) LOU: respect so it’s easy to see: if something’s up with someone (0.2) INT: yeah= LOU: =cos you know them that well (0.9) LOU: so it is just like affection n (0.9) LOU: just little like expressions they give yer (0.6) LOU: ˚so you know˚ (1.7) INT: especially the ones you live with xx[x xxx xxx you] get to know them LOU: [yeah exactly yeah] (0.7) ((2 MINUTES 49 SECONDS DELETED)) (4.4) INT: have you ever been let down by a friend? (0.4) LOU: yeah (1.7) INT: that was quite defin↑ite (.) LOU: yea(h)h hhh [hhh] INT: [hhh] hhh hhh hhh hhh hhh (0.5) LOU: yeah (0.2) LOU: I have (0.2) INT: can you tell me about that? (0.2) LOU: e::m (0.8) LOU: well she was (0.6) LOU: we were very: >you know when you have one of those< friends who (.) we’ve been friends since nursery (0.4) INT: ˚x[x˚] LOU: [so] like we have (0.3) LOU: actually gro[wn up togther] INT: [you’ve grown up together] quite [literally yeah] LOU: [xxx yeah] literally (.) INT: ˚yeah˚ (0.4) LOU: an: (0.6) LOU: it was through a boyfriend she ˚betrayed me˚ (0.2) LOU: ˚she sort of like˚ (0.4) LOU: ˚them two˚ (0.9) LOU: ˚sort of (.) had intercourse together n˚ (0.6) LOU: ˚behind me back˚ (0.7) LOU: so it was quite a (1.1) LOU: dumph on m[y:] INT: [what] a boyfriend of ] that she LOU: [yeah] (.) LOU: she did (0.2) INT: ˚pilfered˚ (0.2) LOU: yeah ha [ha .h]hh INT: [ha ha ha] (0.2) LOU: s[o] INT: [ho]w long ago was that? (0.3) LOU: e:m (1.1) LOU: ˚s bout˚ (.) two ↑years ago now (0.3) INT: ˚oka[y˚] LOU: [t]wo or three years ago (0.8) INT: so is (0.6) INT: college (0.2) INT: type (0.2) INT: era (0.3) LOU: er yeah just before the year just before college [it was so] GCSE time INT: [okay (.) alright] (0.2) INT: ˚yeah˚ (0.6) LOU: n that did affect me (.) looking back now it really did affect me (.) INT: ho[w wh what s]ort of LOU: [quite badly] (0.3) LOU: like psychologically like NOW (2.8) LOU: I find it ha:rd (0.2) LOU: harder to trust people (0.6) LOU: in that aspect (0.2) INT: ˚hm˚ (1.0) LOU: n her: it’s like (0.3) LOU: cos it wasn’t the fact it was him it was who (0.3) LOU: done it like it was that particular ↓frien:d (0.3) LOU: the one who I’d grown up with who I knew th- who knew me best (0.7) INT: y[eah] LOU: [it was just] a proper (1.2) LOU: li:ke (1.0) LOU: we relied on each other for e- like people used to say oh where’s your partner in crime (.) if they saw me to me and the same to her like they expect the other one to be round the corner (.) INT: ˚hm˚= LOU: =it was really (0.7) LOU: it was really difficult (1.0) LOU: ˚it’s diff (.) difficult time˚ (.) INT: are you in touch with her now? (.) LOU: ye↑ah wh sh actually living with us next ye(h)ar s(h)o .hhh it’s quite stra:nge it’s (0.2) LOU: she’s the girl who’s not settled down properly here (0.7) INT: oh [you you] mentione[d her ear:l]ier yeah ˚yeah˚ LOU: [so] [yeah (.) yeah] (.) LOU: it’s her she e:m (1.0) LOU: but then other fr- if I talk about it like the girl I was on about before Anna (0.2) LOU: who (0.2) LOU: we were talking about who lives in Ireland= INT: =˚hm˚ (.) LOU: she (0.2) LOU: like I’m ↑too s↑oft (.) and I’m too (1.0) LOU: >like she said if it was< he:r she (.) wouldn’t look at her again (0.7) LOU: but then I think that’s my problem I’m too soft n too (0.9) LOU: like I can’t just forget about someone who was that close to me (0.9) LOU: ˚you know for doing something like that˚ (.) I’d rather (1.0) LOU: put it behi:nd (0.6) INT: you don’t think it’s too soft (0.6) LOU: but (0.3) LOU: .hhh (0.6) LOU: no: (0.6) LOU: but then when I talk to people about I s:it there n think ˚maybe I am being ↑too soft˚ (1.4) LOU: ˚d’you see what I mean˚ (.) INT: .hhh I [do see what you] mean and I’m trying to LOU: [it’s like] (0.2) INT: I wanna make you say it though ha [ha ha ha ha ha] LOU: [xxx ha ha] .hhh (0.2) LOU: it’s (0.2) LOU: it’s quite stra:nge (0.9) LOU: but (1.2) LOU: >I don’t know I just didn’t< want something like that to come between us (1.7) LOU: but then it is really quite a (0.7) INT: I [take it that] LOU: [I know it doesn’t s]ound (.) INT: she n: (.) the ex-boyfriend are not s still together [˚or anything˚] LOU: [no they w]ere but that was the LOU: annoying thin:g she come to me when he split up with her (1.7) LOU: s[o I was li:]ke INT: [] (1.0) LOU: that’s when we di[d fall out (.) n she’s l]ike INT: [that’s quite cheeky ha ha ha] (0.3) LOU: hu (0.8) LOU: what do you want me to say? (0.9) LOU: I just s:aid to her like I hope he was worth it (0.9) LOU: ˚like˚ (0.6) LOU: cos she kno:w:s that er (0.5) LOU: like (0.5) LOU: I’ve forgiven her but I’ll never forget it but in a s↑ense[ I don]’t think that’s really INT: [˚hm˚] LOU: forgiveness (1.1) LOU: ˚in a way˚ (0.2) LOU: cos there is (1.0) LOU: like NOW (1.7) LOU: I won’t (.) there’s things I won’t (0.7) LOU: tell her (0.2) LOU: ˚n˚ (0.6) LOU: it’s affected >little things like that so it has< aff[ected ]our friendship (.) quite= INT: [˚yeah˚] LOU: =badly but (0.6) LOU: then she’s only got herself to blame really I can’t be blamed for that (0.7) INT: has it affected the way (0.7) INT: th:at um >you speak to other< friends o:r (0.6) INT: or or or the way you’ve made other fr↑iendships or anything like that? (0.5) LOU: e:m (0.5) LOU: not in sense of that way but (.) sometimes I do (2.0) LOU: it affects ↑boyfriends really (0.6) LOU: having trust in them (0.3) LOU: rather than (0.4) LOU: friends (0.6) LOU: which is quite strange really (.) INT: even [though it was y- y- y- y-] yah (.) [yeah] LOU: [cos it’s like I blame her mo:re] [but I’m li]ke (1.0) LOU: takin it out on them rather than (0.6) LOU: my friends (0.6) LOU: but it’s because I think the group of friends I’ve got now (0.3) LOU: I (0.2) LOU: do trust them (0.7) LOU: but then I trusted he:r so (.) it’s one of them things that er (0.7) LOU: you’ve just gotta (1.2) LOU: not think it (1.6) INT: [what (.)] consciously not [think] it? LOU: [˚xxx˚] [yeah] (1.0) INT: ˚s˚ do you find it sort of bubbling up n then you [go n n] n no [I’m not going LOU: [yeah] [yeah (.) yeah] INT: down the]re (.) ah (.) LOU: definitely (0.8) INT: ˚okay˚ (0.6) LOU: ˚definitely˚ (3.1) LOU: ˚but yeah˚ I think (0.4) LOU: that’s the only time my friend’s proper let me down (0.6) LOU: but it was quite a (0.9) LOU: ˚like˚ doosh (0.6) LOU: but [er I thin]k if I wasn’t as strong minded as I was (.) back then INT: [˚xxx˚] (0.3) LOU: I wouldn’t (0.5) LOU: it would have affected me quite (0.8) LOU: like severely (0.4) LOU: I know it might seem to you like a little thin:g (.) but to me it [was] INT: [oh g]od INT: no [n n n n no] Jesus no LOU: [no ha .hhh] (0.2) LOU: ˚x˚ it was quite like (0.5) LOU: ˚a big thing˚ (1.0) LOU: ˚but˚= INT: =˚no absolutely˚ (0.2) INT: .hhh I mean I guess it’s it’s why (2.3) INT: I’m curious about (0.5) INT: her moving in: with [you next year .hhh >is she gonna be] in the same< house? LOU: [yea:h that’s what she said] INT: or[: next] door one the s[ame one] LOU: [yeah] [same h]ouse (0.4) LOU: cos that’s what Anna was saying like how can you (0.3) LOU: be so supportive of her cos she’s not really made (0.4) LOU: she only stays at uni when she can n then she goes back h↓ome (0.5) LOU: sh[e’s] like I don’t see how you show her that much suppor:t n INT: [˚m˚] (0.4) LOU: look after her in a way when she’s done ↑that to yer (0.7) INT: d’[you see a] lot of her? LOU: [˚xxx˚] (0.9) LOU: I ↑used to but n:ot so much now (0.7) LOU: like I used to before the all this happened we used to be on the phone every day (0.3) INT: yeah (0.2) LOU: we used to (0.2) LOU: go like socialise together every night as you do when you’re younger (0.6) LOU: but we went different high schools but she was still my closest friend (1.2) LOU: ˚xxx˚ (1.0) LOU: so then through college I hardly saw her really (0.3) LOU: jus (0.9) LOU: just sort of let her (0.3) LOU: drift apart n then we [come ↓he]↓re INT: [˚hm m˚] (1.0) LOU: ˚n˚ (0.5) LOU: ˚just had to (.) sho[w her a bit of support really˚] INT: [how much have you seen xxx how] much have you seen of her here? (0.6) LOU: tsk e:m well (0.4) LOU: she does I do ((DEGREE SUBJECT A)) with ((DEGREE SUBJECT B)) (.) INT: yeah (0.5) LOU: n she does ((DEGREE SUBJECT B)) s↓o we see each other on our c↑ourse (0.3) INT: oka[y] LOU: [but] then (0.3) LOU: outside that I don’t (1.0) INT: xx[x xxx] LOU: [really] see her (0.5) INT: she’s one of that sort of course work (0.2) LOU: y[eah] INT: [that cour]se gr[oup of friends rather th]an LOU: [yeah now she is] (0.3) LOU: but it’s quite stra:nge from how close we used to be to now [she’s ju]st INT: [yeah] (1.4) LOU: ˚like˚ (1.6) LOU: but then I when e:m (0.7) LOU: it was not so long ago me n Anna were talking about it actually (0.6) LOU: n she was saying how can you live with her next year n stuff cos I don’t really (0.8) LOU: like bringing it up in a way (0.4) LOU: cos it’s just (1.0) LOU: something (0.7) LOU: that happened (0.9) LOU: you know what I mean (0.6) LOU: so [I’d only] INT: [you don’t] not like to bring it up (0.6) INT: because it’s still uncomfortable for [you? or be]cause of how people LOU: [yeah] (0.9) INT: like what Anna says you’re a bit soft n [all that sort of] stuff= LOU: [yeah] LOU: =I think [it’s] INT: [>other] people’s reactions< or or your: feelings [about it] LOU: [bit of bo]th re[ally] INT: [bit of] both (0.3) LOU: cos when they say that it makes me thin:k how I should have reacted (0.8) LOU: n how (1.7) LOU: like (0.3) INT: how should you have reacted (0.8) LOU: ˚jus˚ (1.1) LOU: not been friends wi(h)th her a(h)ny more really .hhh I was qu- I were r- really was quite soft about it (0.9) LOU: ˚but˚ (1.4) LOU: ˚she’s my fr↓iend˚ (0.4) LOU: so in some respects I do think (0.8) LOU: I (0.3) LOU: well with he:r I give a lot more than she gives back to me (1.8) LOU: but then (1.3) LOU: like she knows it now (1.0) INT: yeah= LOU: =like she know:s (1.1) INT: xx [>I mean it] must have< changed the way that she: LOU: [xxx] (1.2) INT: deals with ↑you as well I [guess] LOU: [yea]h (1.3) LOU: ˚definitely˚ (0.2) INT: how’s how’s that? (0.6) LOU: ˚it˚ (1.6) LOU: it’s quite str- at f↑i:rst it didn’t like (0.2) LOU: especially when she come to me after they:’d >spli- I don’t think< (0.4) LOU: (1.6) INT: ↑really? (.) LOU: yeah I think that’s what it is I [think] ↓she just thinks of it as li:ke INT: [˚xx˚] (1.1) LOU: something that’s in the past and it is forgotten about whereas it really (0.2) LOU: isn’t (1.4) INT: d’you t↑alk about it with her (1.2) LOU: ˚no˚ (1.7) INT: it just doesn’t come ↑up o[r:] LOU: [yea]h it just doesn’t= INT: =˚okay˚ (1.0) LOU: it’s li:ke a taboo subject ˚in a way˚ (0.7) INT: a[lright okay] LOU: [just never] comes up (0.2) LOU: ˚so˚ (0.6) LOU: a[fter it happened a couple of months after] INT: [an and if it did you’d sort o]f: (0.4) LOU: yeah (.) INT: change the s[xx xx topic] LOU: [we did have] a: (.) like quite a bit of an argument about it (0.2) LOU: a couple of months after it happen:ed (0.4) LOU: but then since then ˚we’ve never mentioned it˚ (1.7) LOU: ˚jus˚ (0.2) LOU: ˚one of [those things˚] INT: [sounds a little] uncomfortable I [guess] LOU: [yea:]hr [it is] ha ha .hhh= INT: [yeah] INT: =˚yeah˚ (0.5) LOU: ˚it’s quite strange˚ (0.9) LOU: ˚but˚ (2.1) LOU: ma[ybe] it will come up when we’re living together INT: [um] (0.7) LOU: ˚who knows˚ (0.6) INT: I guess it’s b↓ound to over [the course of] the year n all that [sort of stuff] LOU: [yeah] [definite]ly (1.8) LOU: ˚definitely˚ (1.7) LOU: um (0.6) INT: ˚sort of˚ (3.6) INT: I think I’ve finished with most of the questions but there’s s- c- (0.2) INT: couple of things (1.0) INT: ((cough cough)) sorry (0.5) INT: u[m] LOU: [>it’s alrightdo your fam- do your family< know: a lot of your friend[s n ]stuff yeah?= LOU: [yeah] LOU: =yeah (0.2) INT: [↓so there’s quite a] quite a lot of overlap= LOU: [definitely] LOU: =yeah (.) INT: do they know your uni friends as well as your college friends (.) LOU: e::m they’ve m↑et (.) like my m↓um’s met them when she’s come up n (0.8) LOU: you know for the day to see me or: (0.3) INT: okay (0.3) LOU: like if she’s (.) bringing me foo:d or if she’s taking stuff back (1.0) LOU: bu[t they’ve not] come back to m↓ine (.) with me (.) or any[thing yet s]o INT: [˚xxx xxx˚] [>alright okayI’m glad you mentioned that actually because you’ve< spoken about friends (0.9) INT: almost exclusively girlfriends (0.2) LOU: yeah hhh= INT: =you’ve not really spoken about friendships with with boys at [↑all] LOU: [yeah] (0.3) INT: d’you have ↑d’you have male fr[iends?] LOU: [yeah] definitely (0.4) LOU: there’s a: (.) actually there’s a lad who: in halls who a- (.) is like (0.3) LOU: my brother from another mother as they say (.) INT: hhh= LOU: =we are very (0.4) LOU: cos I do (.) I find it (.) I know I’ve just talked about girlfriends [but] they are like INT: [yeah] (1.0) LOU: I find it easier to talk to lads than I do to ↑girls (0.8) INT: re[ally] LOU: [d’y] yeah= INT: =okay (0.2) LOU: but I think it’s because I know how judging girls can be (0.7) LOU: because before I come to uni I was very like (0.8) LOU: I judge a book by its cover (0.5) LOU: whereas now I’ve learnt to open my mind a bit n (1.0) LOU: start actually talking to different people n I’ve found (0.6) LOU: like quite a (0.4) LOU: good friends n different [peop]le INT: [yeah] (1.0) LOU: and have like different (.) dress sense n (0.6) LOU: music type (0.7) LOU: ˚found good friends in them so˚ (0.4) INT: not all [sort of cookie] cutter type LOU: [xxx xxx x] (.) LOU: n yeah (.) INT: yeah (0.2) LOU: w[e’re a]ll INT: [˚yeah˚] (0.3) LOU: like people in our group we’re so different to each other but we all connect in our own way (0.4) INT: like what are [some] of the extremes LOU: [˚xx˚] (.) LOU: like (0.6) LOU: there’s a gi:rl who’s very (.) hippy (0.8) LOU: very very hippy n she does creative writing so she’s very (0.8) LOU: dada::: everything’s a flower n ha [ha ha .hhh] n INT: [ha ha ha ha ha] (0.6) LOU: then there’s people who are quite (0.9) LOU: like (0.2) LOU: Jimmy his name is who’s quite serious n (.) quite (0.3) LOU: speaks proper n (0.6) LOU: n they get on ↑it’s really good (0.4) LOU: to see how a variety of people (0.4) LOU: like if you saw a picture of us it would be (.) like whoa (0.6) LOU: cos (0.4) LOU: just different varieties o[f per]sonality there INT: [˚x˚] (0.9) LOU: but it’s really cool cos we all have our little connection so (1.1) LOU: ˚it’s dead good˚ (0.7) INT: .hhh [so] LOU: [˚x]xx˚ (0.2) INT: male friends (0.2) LOU: m (0.4) INT: how have you: how have you met (0.4) INT: male friends (1.3) INT: through ha:lls? or[::] LOU: [y]eah (.) through ↓here (.) INT: y[eah] LOU: [through] halls ↑yeah (0.5) LOU: well the first person I spoke to was one of the male friends cos I was waiting downstairs for my mum and dad to park the car like blah di blah (0.5) LOU: n then we just started speaking n then (0.5) LOU: we went to the student union the night after (0.5) LOU: n I saw them n then that’s how our group formed cos (0.4) LOU: they knew so and so and so and so knew so and so (0.5) INT: ˚ok[ay˚] LOU: [but] there’s (.) ↓here (0.8) LOU: in our I think there’s about (1.9) LOU: ↑eight or nine lads n then (0.4) LOU: there’s only like six of us girls so it is (.) more ↓male (0.3) LOU: dominated our group (0.3) INT: alright o[kay] LOU: [s]o (.) INT: ˚okay˚= LOU: =n I do fi:n:d I do find it easier to talk to (0.7) LOU: ˚men than women really˚ (1.4) LOU: ˚so˚ (0.4) LOU: like [Phillip the lad] INT: [so it’s the six of you] girls that are taking on these houses next [year] LOU: [yea]h (1.2) INT: n the blokes are they gonna be (0.7) LOU: th[ey’re: four] of them are living together INT: [around xx] (0.9) LOU: n another three are living together (0.4) LOU: n then a couple of the others are just (.) you know with friends off their ↑cour:se (0.6) LOU: so (.) INT: ˚yeah˚ (1.4) LOU: m (0.5) INT: ˚okay˚ (0.2) LOU: ˚it’s quite strange˚ (1.4) INT: the >how how< do the (0.4) INT: (0.9) INT: differ between (0.5) INT: the guys and the girls (1.4) LOU: INT: [˚for you˚] (2.1) LOU: it (0.3) LOU: it ↑doesn’t really it’s (2.5) LOU: I don’t know (0.9) LOU: like with Phillip we’re: (0.5) LOU: very close like (0.8) LOU: he if Anna wasn’t round I’d go to him rather than the girls in me flat if there was something wrong with me= INT: =˚okay˚ (0.6) LOU: he’d be (1.3) LOU: or if I’m annoyed at something I’d go round and speak to him about it or: (1.2) LOU: cos he is (1.8) LOU: without Anna (.) he is ˚like my best mate at uni that I’ve made really˚ (0.6) LOU: but then ↑all of them (0.9) LOU: like I could spen:d (0.4) LOU: time with every individual one of them (0.2) INT: yea[h] LOU: [in] the same way (2.0) INT: ˚xx˚= LOU: =so I am but (.) think Anna n (0.2) LOU: Phillip are the ones I’m more: close to (1.4) LOU: it’s like (.) yesterday: I was ill (0.6) LOU: >cos we ce went out celebratin so I didn’t< (0.5) LOU: [] INT: [when you say ill you mean] you mean seriously hung o[ver] LOU: [ye]ah [ha ha INT: [ha ha ha ha ha ha LOU: = INT: ha ha ] INT: =let’s not beat around the [bush here ha ha ha] LOU: [n ha ha ha] .hhh n I went round his and we watched a film n just like (0.6) LOU: chilled out (0.3) LOU: whereas I didn’t (0.2) LOU: stay in my flat (.)˚with my girls˚ (0.4) INT: ˚m:˚= LOU: =n we do a lot of cooking together (0.2) LOU: like we cook for each other (.) mo[re than] we do ˚for the girls in the flat˚ INT: [˚yeah˚] (0.7) LOU: he is like ˚a really close f˚ >like when you< said for a friend to think of (0.5) INT: [it was it was him or her yeah] LOU: [I didn’t know which one (.) yeah] it was (0.5) LOU: which one (0.7) INT: ˚oka[y˚] LOU: [>bu]t then: when you said how did you meet them I couldn’t remember how I met him so it was like Anna< (.) LOU: [xxx ha ha ha] INT: [ha ha ha ha ha] ha ha ha= LOU: =.hhh (0.2) LOU: we were talking about that the other day actually (.) >we were like< how did we meet? (1.2) LOU: ˚it’s [quite˚] INT: [>you] don’t kno[w?is there anything< about (.) friends or friendship that (1.7) INT: u:m (0.5) INT: >that you can think of that< I’ve not asked about? or or that I’ve just sort of s:kipped over or that you’ve g[ot that] you particularly want to say? LOU: [e:m] (2.8) LOU: ↑no not really I don’t think so (1.2) LOU: just think (2.0) LOU: (0.5) LOU: ˚friends˚ (0.6) LOU: ˚definitely˚ (0.4) INT: what would you do without them (3.8) LOU: probably be best friends with my mum ha [ha ha] .hhh b(h)ut .hhh INT: [˚ha ha˚] (0.3) LOU: I don’t k↑now I I wouldn’t know what to do without them (.) INT: ˚x˚ (0.7) LOU: cos I do most things with them (0.5) INT: ˚yeah˚ (1.2) LOU: really (.) I couldn’t imagine not (0.4) LOU: being with my friends (0.2) INT: you said you don’t spend much time alone (0.2) LOU: yea:h I don’t= INT: =>d’you spend any time< alone (0.5) INT: apart from [studying] LOU: [I was] thinking about it the other day really and I don’t (0.8) LOU: it’s quite stra:nge (1.2) LOU: it’s like cos if I’m not with my friends I’m with my boyfriend or I’m with my mum and dad (0.9) LOU: ˚so˚ I do get the odd (.) but I think that’s one thing I need to do really (.) spend more time (0.4) LOU: >on my [own< but] then I just INT: [˚yeah˚] (0.5) LOU: don’t see the point (0.8) LOU: plus I think too much as well so (0.3) INT: hhh (0.3) LOU: ha ha= INT: =can’t have that [not at uni]vers[ity ha ha ha] ha ha= LOU: [yeah] [I know ha ha] LOU: =think about things too much so= INT: =how does the boyfrien::d frien:ds (.) dynamic work out for you= LOU: =well: (0.6) LOU: he: (0.7) LOU: I met him through a (.) a f- close friend’s brother (0.4) LOU: one of the girls back home (0.4) INT: ˚okay˚= LOU: =so (0.5) LOU: n then her brother also (0.2) LOU: started (.) seeing another frien:d in our group so we all are (1.2) LOU: like one big group (0.4) LOU: there’s like ↑nine of us I think cos there’s another lad as well so it’s like us six girls n them three lads and we are the same group (0.4) LOU: like he’ll go out with my friends when I’m not there cos they’re his friends too= INT: =yeah (0.4) LOU: so it’s really cool [n then] INT: [>is he here in] Liverpool< (0.3) LOU: no: em he’s from back home (0.4) INT: righ[t] LOU: [s]o n then when he come up here he (0.2) LOU: like (0.2) LOU: a close (0.2) LOU: group with the lads he (0.2) LOU: got on with them dead well so (0.5) LOU: it was really ˚quite comforting˚ (0.3) INT: ˚yeah˚ (.) LOU: ˚to see that˚ (1.5) LOU: ˚so˚ it’s not difficult cos one of my friends her boyfrien:d (0.7) LOU: he doesn’t come out with us and she finds it quite difficult because she has to (.) divide her ti:me (0.3) INT: m[::] LOU: [whereas I] don’t if (0.5) LOU: my friends wanna go ou:t he’ll come with us or (1.0) LOU: cos like Michael’s there as well so we are just like one big group reall[y] INT: [y]eah= LOU: =˚n he’s included in it˚ (1.6) LOU: ˚so it’s quite good˚ (0.5) INT: but you still get to spend time with the boyfriend= LOU: =yeah definitely [we] still do stuff to our INT: [yeah] (0.3) LOU: our[selv]es n INT: [˚yeah˚] (0.3) INT: ˚yeah˚ (0.7) LOU: ˚definitely˚ (0.5) INT: ˚okay˚ (.) LOU: n then he’ll come up he:re n stay over (0.5) LOU: n we’ll just stay in and do our own thing or (1.5) INT: ˚um˚ (0.2) LOU: ˚so it’s good˚ (1.8) INT: I don’t th:ink I’ve got anything else to a:sk (2.3) LOU: I feel like I’ve gone on forever ha ha (.) INT: well you’re supposed to s[o xxx xxx ha ha ha ha ha] LOU: [xxx that’s alright then ha ha ha] .hhh (0.2) INT: (0.6) INT: .hh[h okay >if you don’t have anything] else< to to ↓add shall we shall we wrap it LOU: [feels strange not asking] INT: up there? (.) LOU: ↑yeah yeah that’s (0.3) LOU: yeah= INT: =cool (0.5) INT: >th[ank you very mu]ch
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