Risk Bilinçli Annelik: Uzman Risk Söylemlerinin Annelik Deneyimi Üzerindeki EtkisiZeynep Zehra Sadıkoğlu
Bu araştırmanın amacı düşünümsel bilimselleşme, estetik düşünüm ve sağlığın değişen kapsamı gibi süreç ve etkilerle, çağdaş risklere dair artan farkındalığın annelik deneyimine ve çocuğu tehdit eden risklere yönelik algılarına etkisini betimlemektir. Araştırma fenomenolojik araştırma modeli ile desenlenmiştir. Çalışma grubu yüksek eğitimli orta ve orta üstü sosyoekonomik statüye (SES) sahip 0-6 yaş aralığında çocuğa sahip 12, 7-12 yaş aralığında çocuğa sahip 12, 13-18 yaş aralığında çocuğa sahip 12 katılımcı, toplamda 36 katılımcı ile gerçekleştirilmiştir. Veriler kategorik içerik analizi tekniği ile çözümlenmiştir. Araştırma bulgularına göre uzman değerlendirmelerinde öne çıkan hamilelik ve doğumun doğru yönetimi, anne-çocuk ilişkisinde güvenli bağlanmanın ve etkili bir iletişimin sağlanması ile ilişkili çocuğa dönük faydalar, annelerin bu faydaları elde edememenin taşıdığı risklere yönelik algılarını yoğunlaştırmaktadır. Ayrıca aynı değerlendirmelerde katkı maddeli ürünlerin tüketimi ve uygunsuz bir sosyal çevre ile ilişkilendirilen risklere çekilen dikkat, orta-orta üstü SES grubundaki annelerin habituslarının önemli bir bileşeni olan ve çocuklarının yaşamlarını kontrol etmeyi annelerin bir görevi olarak kabul eden risk bilinçli annelik anlayışına katkıda bulunmaktadır. Anneler ise kendileri açısından sonuç ve/ veya bedellerine bakmaksızın çocuğa yönelik çok küçük veya çok az anlaşılmış olsa dahi tüm riskleri azaltan davranış ve tutumları kucaklamakta ve hem çocuğun gelişimini destekleme hem de onun refahını/iyiliğini tehdit eden mevcut ve potansiyel tehlikelere karşı koruma sorumluluğunu yüklenmektedir.
Risk-Conscious Motherhood: The Impact of Experts’ Risk Discourses on Mothering ExperienceZeynep Zehra Sadıkoğlu
This research aims to describe the effects of the changes in the nature of contemporary risks and the increased risk perception due to processes such as reflexive scientification, aesthetic reflexivity, and the changing scope of health on the mothering experiences of well-educated Turkish women in the middle and upper socioeconomic status groups. The research was designed using a phenomenological research model. The study group was conducted with a total of 36 participant mothers, of whose children, 12 are between the ages of 0-6, 12 are between the ages of 7-12, and 12 are between the ages of 13-18. The data were analyzed using categorical content analysis. According to the research findings, the benefits for children associated with correctly managing pregnancy and birth, reducing or managing possible risks, and ensuring safe attachment and effective communication in the mother-child relationship stand out in experts’ evaluations and intensify mothers’ perceptions of the risks associated with not obtaining these benefits. In addition to these, these same evaluations paid attention to how the risks connected to consuming additive products and having an unsuitable social environment contribute to the understanding of risk-conscious motherhood, an important component of the habitus of well-educated mothers in the middle-upper socioeconomic status groups. Accordingly, mothers accept controlling their children’s lives as their own duty regardless of their consequences and costs. They embrace behaviors and attitudes that reduce risks and take responsibility for both supporting their children’s development and protecting them against existing/potential dangers that threaten their well-being.
Contemporary risks differ from the risks and dangers of the past in regard to their inability to be restricted spatially or to calculate their long-term effects. This difference has made expertise systems important in defining the risks and determining the measures to be taken against risks. At the same time, the decreased opportunity to give precise information about them has led to their being handled within different risk scenarios. This change brought along an emphasis on avoiding danger to replace the probability factor based on risk-taking by using the knowledge-of-loss option. Developed in line with these changes, risk-conscious motherhood acknowledges that children are at risk from the womb and takes into consideration the worst-case scenario as probable rather than possible. Also, the fact that mothers’ responsibility of protecting their children makes ignoring these risks impossible even if mothers have little firsthand experience about the risks. Thus, risk-conscious motherhood includes preventing and managing all kinds of risks, being prudent, and controlling the future of the child as much as possible.
This study applies the phenomenological design, a qualitative research method. In line with the research subject and purpose, the study group contains 36 Turkish mothers in the middle and upper socioeconomic status groups, of whose children 12 are between the ages of 0-6, 12 are between the ages of 7-12, and 12 are between the ages of 13-18. The data obtained from the semi-structured in-depth interviews have been analyzed using categorical content analysis. Concerning the validity of the research, interviews were conducted one at a time. In regard to the reliability of the research, the created categories were associated logically and consistently.
Findings and Discussion
Pregnancy and childbirth stand out as the processes shaped in line with experts’ risk discourses where mothers’ risk perceptions are the most intense. The fact that experts reveal more scientific and predictable risk arguments through different screening and blood tests increases mothers’ risk perceptions toward pregnancy and childbirth. However, when addressing children’s psychological and cognitive development, mothers’ risk consciousness has gained attention. Any factor that puts secure attachment at risk and requires mothers to perceive and interpret their children’s emotional signs and to respond to them in a timely and appropriate manner is connected to possible psychological problems. However, mothers’ inability to communicate well with their children as they get older has begun to be considered as a risk factor. For good communication, mothers’ sensitivity to their children’s development, correctly understanding their needs, positioning themself appropriately toward their children,and empathizing are considered to be qualities that mothers should have. Thus, mothers’ being attributed with the responsibility of protecting and supporting children’s cognitive and psychological health has expanded the ethical framework health represents for mothers. Other issues in which mothers have high risk consciousness relate to the use of modern additives/carcinogenic substances and of technology. In the face of these risks, the suggestions from experts who adopt an alternative medical approach are found more valuable in terms of being scientific as well as representing greater health. Therefore, increased risk perception stands out as a phenomenon of being disenchanted with science in the reflexive scientification process. Also, mothers prefer to control children’s use of technology and the content they access to the extent conditions allow due to reasons such as spending quality time together, the desire to establish a secure attachment, and distracting their children to limit decreases in academic performance. Meanwhile, social environment also begins to be perceived as risky when children reach school age. People outside the immediate social environment are seen as a threat, and mothers get anxious about how to protect their children from other people. In this context, news in the media on harassment and abuse raise awareness, causing mothers to consider other people as dangerous. However, bullying from peers is also perceived as a threat to their safety. For this reason, mothers are cautious when deciding about which school to enroll their children in. They find criteria such as school’s social environment and parent profiles to be significant. Therefore, choosing a school is a result of not only academic risks and gains but also more subjective evaluations that structure mothers’ habitus (i.e., aesthetic reflexivity). In addition, mothers worry about their adolescent child’s friends who lack appropriate behaviors and values. Therefore, mothers’ habitus also seem to be effective in the formation of different concerns and certain risk perceptions. In a context where the objective risk parameters indicated by the scientific risk arguments and the subjective risk parameters brought along by lifestyle and habits, mothers’ being attributed with the responsibility of planning, controlling, and managing their children’s lives to affect increases in mothers’ risk consciousness.