Using narrative inquiry to listen to the voices of adolescent mothers in relation to their use of social networking sites (SNS)

Samantha Nolan, Joyce Hendricks, Moira Williamson, Sally Ferguson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Aim: This article presents a discussion highlighting the relevance and strengths of using narrative inquiry to explore experiences of social networking site (SNS) use by adolescent mothers. Background: Narrative inquiry as a method reveals truths about holistic human experience. Knowledge gleaned from personal narratives informs nursing knowledge and clinical practice. This approach gives voice to adolescent mothers in relation to their experiences with SNS as a means of providing social support. Design: Discussion paper. Data sources: This paper draws and reflects on the author's experiences using narrative inquiry and is supported by literature and theory. The following databases were searched: CINAHL, Cochrane Library, Medline, Scopus, ERIC, ProQuest, PsychINFO, Web of Science and Health Collection (Informit). Key terms and Boolean search operators were used to broaden the search criteria. Search terms included: adolescent mother, teenage mother, “social networking sites”, online, social media, Facebook, social support, social capital and information. Dates for the search were limited to January 1995–June 2017. Implications for practice/research: Narrative research inherently values the individual “story” of experience. This approach facilitates rapport building and methodological flexibility with an often difficult to engage sample group, adolescents. Conclusion: Narrative inquiry reveals a deep level of insight into social networking site use by adolescent mothers. The flexibility afforded by use of a narrative approach allows for fluidity and reflexivity in the research process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)743-751
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Advanced Nursing
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2018


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