Volume 8 Issue 2 (2012): New Approaches to Psychodynamic Research
Main Articles

A Psychoanalytic Qualitative Study of Subjective Life Experiences of Women With Breast Cancer

Elvin Aydin
Vehbi Koc Foundation American Hospital
Bahadir M. Gulluoglu
Marmara University Hospital, Istanbul
M. Kemal Kuscu
Marmara University Hospital, Istanbul
Published November 26, 2012
  • research frameworks & paradigms,
  • research method,
  • psychodynamic research,
  • breast cancer,
  • subjective experience,
  • narrative research,
  • narrative interview,
  • life event,
  • coping strategy
  • ...More


This article exemplifies research on the subjective life experiences of women with breast cancer, designed from a psychoanalytic perspective. Such research aims to reveal the subjective intrapsychic processes of women suffering from breast cancer, which can provide researchers and health care professionals with useful insight. Using Biographic narrative interpretative method, the study reveals some common denominators in the subjective life experiences of women with breast cancer. The study revealed that the subjects consider the diagnosis of breast cancer as one of the four main events in their lives. Even though these events are very different from each other, in terms of type and severity, the results indicate a common process in the way these life events are experienced by the participants. These results are relevant for health care practitioners in structuring their psychosocial support programs so as to better accommodate their patients' psychological needs.