The Value of Lived Experience

Diane Cass

Research output: Other contribution to conferencePresentation only


Introduction: In 2019 all my sons and I were diagnosed with a degenerative and incurable illness. We found very few supports to assist with our new way of being. To bring meaning to this emotional situation, I decided to undertake a thesis in the hope of, inter alia, developing supports for other families facing similar outcomes.
Goals and Methods: Having decided upon a phenomenological study, I wanted to utilise the axiology of my own position within the research. I considered my situation to be a lived experience, and ultimately decided upon a hermeneutic phenomenological study. To ensure my perceived position was not borne from an emotional response to the evaluative property of the situation I found myself in, I wanted to explore my lived experience from an applied scientific ontological perspective. I found that many studies where the term lived experience had been incorporated, brought into question the individual properties of emotion. That is not to presume that one person’s lived experience is less than another person’s lived experience. Rather, a person’s emotions are responsive to the unique value of the experience, meaning there is no applied scientific ontology for a lived experience.
Results: Considering my diagnosis I was able to accept my circumstance as fact. However, I also considered my own emotional values associated with the different aspects of the situation, which brought into question the multi-layered aspects of my lived experience and by extension all constructs of lived experience.
Conclusion: The formal diagnoses of my family has validated my lived experience as fact. However, there are a multitude of auxiliary issue associated with the diagnoses that may not provide value from a lived experience perspective. As a result, these epistemological dimensions of emotion must be considered carefully when exploring the construct of a lived experience.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 26 Jan 2023
EventWorld Conference on Qualitative Research - Algarve, Portugal
Duration: 25 Jan 202327 Jan 2023
Conference number: 7th


ConferenceWorld Conference on Qualitative Research
Internet address


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