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, 56 (5), 576-94

Resilience in Eating Disorders: A Qualitative Study


Resilience in Eating Disorders: A Qualitative Study

Carlota Las Hayas et al. Women Health.


The objectives of the authors in this study were two-fold: (1) to explore the role of resilience in recovery from eating disorders (EDs), and (2) to develop a model of resilience in women with EDs. Semi-structured interviews with ten women were conducted in April 2011, along with two focus groups with women who had recovered from EDs (n = 5 women each; conducted in April 2012 at the University of Deusto, Spain), one focus group with clinical experts (n = 8; conducted in April 2012 at the Foundation Against EDs of Biskay, Spain), and six narratives from primary caregivers of ED patients living in Biskay, Spain (conducted in November 2012). All data were analyzed using a grounded theory approach. All female participants acknowledged experiencing resilience in their recovery. The analysis resulted in a conceptual model of resilience composed of the following categories: deep dissatisfaction with life, turning point, acceptance, hope, determination to change, accountability for the ED, active coping, getting social support, gaining self-knowledge, getting information about EDs, increase well-being, trait resilience, initiating new projects and living in the here and now. According to the model presented, resilience preceded the experience of recovery in women with EDs in this sample and could be a useful asset for future interventions.

Keywords: Eating disorders; grounded theory; qualitative methods; recovery; resilience.

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