Autobiografia (Jan 2016)

„Głupio żeby tak oddać żonę…” – konstruowanie opieki i męskości przez starych mężczyzn opiekujących się swoimi przewlekle chorymi żonami

  • Urszula Kluczyńska

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 6


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Care is perceived as a female task, and it is still the case that women are most often the ones who provide care among family members. But as an effect of socio-economic and cultural changes, increasing numbers of older husbands have become the primary carers. The author research draws on semi-structured, in-depth interviews with ten men between 64 and 90 years old, who are the primary carer for their wives. The main aim of the article is to describe how older men perceived themselves as carers and defined care in their biographies. The author also tried to describe how older men who care for their wives construct their masculinity in the face of their new roles and tasks. Analysis allowed the main motive of providing care to emerge: obligation. What is more, institutional care was treated by older men as a last resort, also in context of masculinity role. The research findings showed that an important factor in the way masculinity is constructed by older men caring for their wives was the definition of care.