Published : 2023-12-31

The problems of lonely older women (60+) and women approaching old age (50+) related to keeping pets at home.

Abstract

Little research is devoted to the problems of lonely older women (60+) and women approaching old age (50+) who keep pets at home. Therefore, the study aimed to analyze the problems pet ownership causes for these women and understand the meaning that lonely people attribute to these concerns. Four women who had owned pets for at least one year were chosen for the study, assuming their relevant experience caring for pets. The qualitative research presented in the article was based on a constructivist paradigm, which refers to understanding the subjective perspectives of the female participants in the study and the complexity of social and cultural-historical contexts.

A semi-structured interview was conducted with each participant, from which the data for analysis were extracted. After transcription of the recordings, research was conducted using Atlas.ti software. The coding process was based on a grounded theory approach. The theoretical triangulation method was used to ensure the highest quality of the study. The results that emerged from the analysis of the interviews showed that the problems women experience are related to health, the loss associated with having a pet, the worries and concerns of everyday life, the need to change and develop new habits, and intense emotions arising both in interspecies and interpersonal relationships.

The conclusions from the analysis suggest the need for a holistic approach to examining issues related to keeping pets by lonely women. Taking into account social and emotional aspects when analyzing these relationships is essential to understanding the complex context fully.

Keywords:

gerontology, loneliness, relationships with pets, existential concerns



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Karpińska, K. (2023). The problems of lonely older women (60+) and women approaching old age (50+) related to keeping pets at home. Exlibris Social Gerontology Journal, 25(2), 77–97. https://doi.org/10.57655/EXLIBRIS_2_2023_5

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