Therapeutic intimacy, the lived experience of the oncology nurse

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Painter, Vivian G.
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Kadner (1994) defines therapeutic intimacy as "a confiding relationship between two people, a self-disclosure of personal information with the expectation of understanding and acceptance (consisting of) trust, closeness, self-disclosure and reciprocity." The lived experience of oncology nurses who experience deep connected relationships with patients was explored in this study in an attempt to better describe the phenomenon, therapeutic intimacy. Significant statements created formulated meanings (sub-themes) which became organized around 15 themes. The themes formed several theme clusters. Finally, the theme clusters developed into a recognizable pattern of three categories, that helped to describe the experience of therapeutic intimacy: The Ingredients of Intimacy, The Kinds of Intimacy and The Meaning of Intimacy. Findings of the research provided a detailed description of what was prerequisite to the intimate experience, the range of intimate experiences to be engaged in and the results of the intimate experience from the nurses' perspectives. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)