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  1. Pierce, Linda L. PhD, MSN, RN, CRRN, FAHA, FAAN
  2. Steiner, Victoria PhD
  3. Alamina, Foluso MSN, RN, FNP-BC
  4. Onyekelu, Doreen MSN, RN, CNP
  5. Stevenson, Samantha MSN, RN, APRN, AGNP-C


STROKE is sudden and often traumatic with results that affect both the patient and family members who provide care. Approximately 40% of individuals caring for family members/friends are male. Transitioning from the noncaregiver role to caregiver can be unsettling. Guided by Friedemann's framework of systemic organization, this secondary data analysis examined problems reported by men caring for spouses in the first year after stroke. Using a mixed methods design, 73 caregivers (CGs) participated in bimonthly telephone interviews for 1 year. For this analysis, only the males caring for spouses (n = 12 married and n = 1 unmarried partner) were examined. These data were analyzed using Colaizzi's rigorous method of content analysis. Five problem themes emerged: 1) adjusting to multitasking in everyday living (Friedemann's system maintenance and individuation), 2) recognizing physical and mental disabilities (coherence), 3) dealing with outside forces and limited resources (individuation), 4) struggling to return to normal (system maintenance), and 5) feeling physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausted (system maintenance). These problem themes demonstrated incongruence as the men sought to maintain their prior lives.Theory-based themes of male stroke CGs' problems were uncovered that can be used to target interventions to help them achieve balance between incongruence and congruence in their lives.