Purpose: A multiphase model for experiences of family members of persons with mental illness that considers both positive and negative aspects is proposed. Design and Methods: Mixed methods (semistructured interviews, life history timelines, focus group discussions, and the Experience of Caregiving Inventory) were used with caregivers accessing outpatient services of a nongovernmental organization in urban and rural locations around Chennai, India. Findings: Based on our results, we constructed a multiphase model, which we named The Banyan model of caregiver experiences. The phases are (1) manifestation of symptoms, (2) seeking help, (3) helplessness and attribution, (4) relative control and insight, (5) loss and worries, and (6) finding new meaning. Practical Implications: Our multiphase model allows us to identify in more detail the needs of caregivers at various stages.
- family burden
- mental illness