Participation FAQ


If you are considering participation, please read the brief notes below.

Who should participate?

If you identify yourself as someone who has been emotionally parentified, and meet the eligibility criteria, then please participate! Your gender, relationship status, occupation, sexuality and geography don’t matter. For the sake of research, some parameters and criteria have been set to narrow the focus of the research. If you feel you don’t meet the criteria, but would still like to talk about your experiences of parentification or emotional neglect, please feel free to contact me.

What does my participation involve? How much time do I need to spend on this?

We’re beginning to understand something that hasn’t been explored before using a qualitative approach. Qualitative research means that you will be interviewed in a conversational style. There will be free flowing talk between you and me, and the aim is ultimately to understand your experience, from your point of view, in your words. I am only concerned with your thoughts and feelings, as you experience them. This also means however that we will have to spend some time talking. We will need to spend about 6 hours together – broken up over 4 meetings.
The first meeting is for about an hour where we do an intake interview, where I can ask you some basic questions about yourself and answer any questions you might have.
After this we meet twice for about 2 hours each where we have conversations about your experiences.
The last meeting is after about 3 months, where I would like to talk/meet and take you through some of the analysis of your interview, as well as ask you some follow up questions.
We’ll meet at a place that’s mutually convenient, though it must be quiet and free of distractions.

Why participate?

Through these interviews, it is likely that you will form a narrative around your experience, which will give a different or new structure to your thoughts and emotions surrounding this experience. You might find different words to describe what you went through, and tie your past to your present and future using the narrative that emerges in these interviews. The aim is of course that this insight and perspective contribute positively to your mental health and understanding of self.

Are these interviews confidential and anonymized?

Yes. The interview(s) are confidential and will be used solely for academic purposes and advancement in the field of human sciences. Your interview (audio and transcript) will only be accessed by the research team, primarily the doctoral researcher, Nivida Chandra. An analysis of your interview, and excerpts from your interview (anonymised) will be shared with my academic supervisor, Professor Rukmini Nair from IIT Delhi, and my mentor, Dr. Madhvi Bhalla, a trained clinical psychotherapist, for academic purposes only.

Your anonymity will be ensured in all reporting. Your name will not be used for referring to you; instead, you may choose a pseudonym. We will use this in your transcript and in my written reports as well. Excerpts from your interview will be used to highlight features of the subject under study, and it is likely that the entire transcript will be appended with the submission of my final doctoral thesis. This will however all be done using a pseudonym of your choice, and with all other identifying information anonymised.

Will the interview(s) be recorded?

All interviews will be audio recorded, and some notes might be taken by the researcher during the course of the interview(s). The audio recording will then be converted into written format, called a transcription. You are free to view this transcript after it has been generated for any corrections or additional thoughts that you might have.

Is it going to be like therapy? What is painful memories come up?

No, the interviews do not aim to substitute for therapy. However, you may develop insights during our conversation that prove to be therapeutic. You can discuss these with me, and/or with your therapist, if you’re seeing one. Some of the things that come up might be painful to recount or seemingly embarrassing to come to terms with. Please know that you are encouraged to share these with me and/or your therapist. This is an entirely non-judgmental set up, where the aim is to get close to your experience of parentification. This might involve some painful memories, and please feel assured that your narrative is very safe with me, and will be treated with warmth and respect. However, if some memories come up that you don’t want to share or that make you want to exit the interview, then that’s completely understandable. We can always talk about that too!

Can I leave the study at any time?

Absolutely. Participation is voluntary and if you feel that you cannot proceed with the interviews for any reason, then please share these thoughts with the researcher and the interviews shall be terminated. Your material will not be used if you don’t want it to be.

What if I said something that I didn't want to share, or didn't mean?

In such research interviews, we are always revising and revisiting our thoughts and words. Because of this, you can make all the corrections and amendments that you see fit. If there is something you wish should not be shared with anyone, despite the anonymity, then please let me know and I will ensure that I don’t use it.