Counseling; african american; phenomenology; qualitative research
African Americans continue to access non-emergency mental health care at a lower rate than White Americans, despite have equal risk for mental health issues. Currently, literature in counseling focuses on this deficit and why African Americans do not attend counseling, as opposed to those African Americans who do choose to go into counseling. The purpose of this heuristic phenomenological study was to investigate the lived experiences of adult African American mental health counseling clients. Two types of purposive sampling, criterion and snowball, were used to identify and recruit participants. Six African American women were selected for inclusion in this study. Data for this study were collected through two face-to-face audio-recorded interviews with each participant, a demographics questionnaire and researcher field notes. Experiences and meanings identified in this study included: Navigating Crisis, Stigma of Counseling, Counselor and Client Relationship and Acceptance of Self and Others. This study adds a counter-narrative to the counselor literature that highlights African Americans who do choose to become counseling clients, their experiences, and the meanings they take away from that experience.
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Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
College of Education and Human Performance
Education and Human Performance
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)
Dissertations, Academic -- Education and Human Performance; Education and Human Performance -- Dissertations, Academic
Martin, Jessica, "A Phenomenological Investigation of the Lived Experiences of African American Adults in Individual Mental Health Counseling" (2015). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 695.