Breast cancer patients are primary users of Internet Health Forums, virtual self-help communities where they find and share information, preoccupations, and support. Previous literature has mainly focused on analysing the contents and the outcomes of breast cancer forums' participation. In light of the Community of Practice theoretical model, our research investigated the psychosocial processes that build and shape patients' experience and participation in the forum. We conducted 16 semi-structured email interviews with breast cancer patients recruited within a well-established online community. Thematic analysis identified five processes—mirroring, monitoring, modelling, belonging, and distancing—that marked three phases of users' experience: initiation, participation, detachment. An interactive dynamic characterised the identified processes: the disease's experience was shaped by and, in turn, it crafted this virtual community. These community processes contributed to participants' empowerment at practical, informative, and emotional levels through the development of a shared repertoire of resources, stories, and ways of dealing with patients' recurring problems.

Montali, L., Zulato, E., Frigerio, A., Frangi, E., Camussi, E. (2022). Mirroring, monitoring, modelling, belonging, and distancing: Psychosocial processes in an online support group of breast cancer patients. JOURNAL OF COMMUNITY PSYCHOLOGY, 50(2), 992-1007 [10.1002/jcop.22696].

Mirroring, monitoring, modelling, belonging, and distancing: Psychosocial processes in an online support group of breast cancer patients

Montali, L
Primo
;
Zulato, E
Secondo
;
Frigerio, A.;Camussi, E.
Ultimo
2022

Abstract

Breast cancer patients are primary users of Internet Health Forums, virtual self-help communities where they find and share information, preoccupations, and support. Previous literature has mainly focused on analysing the contents and the outcomes of breast cancer forums' participation. In light of the Community of Practice theoretical model, our research investigated the psychosocial processes that build and shape patients' experience and participation in the forum. We conducted 16 semi-structured email interviews with breast cancer patients recruited within a well-established online community. Thematic analysis identified five processes—mirroring, monitoring, modelling, belonging, and distancing—that marked three phases of users' experience: initiation, participation, detachment. An interactive dynamic characterised the identified processes: the disease's experience was shaped by and, in turn, it crafted this virtual community. These community processes contributed to participants' empowerment at practical, informative, and emotional levels through the development of a shared repertoire of resources, stories, and ways of dealing with patients' recurring problems.
Articolo in rivista - Articolo scientifico
cancer survivors; community of practice; group processes; patient participation; self-help groups;
English
992
1007
16
Hybrid Gold Open Access• Green Open Access
Montali, L., Zulato, E., Frigerio, A., Frangi, E., Camussi, E. (2022). Mirroring, monitoring, modelling, belonging, and distancing: Psychosocial processes in an online support group of breast cancer patients. JOURNAL OF COMMUNITY PSYCHOLOGY, 50(2), 992-1007 [10.1002/jcop.22696].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10281/324484
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