Dissertation Title:

Recovery from Depression: A Phenomenological Examination of the Latina’s Lived Experience


Mary Lou Maldonado

Date, Time & Place:

October 4, 2021 at 3:00 pm


The literature on the Latina’s individual experience recovery of mental illness is lacking.  The study utilized Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (Smith, Flowers, & Larkin, 2009), to illuminate the lived experience of Latinas who have had major depression.  The results of this study are categorized in three themes: the Latina’s experience of mental illness, healthcare landscape, and resiliency.  The psychological findings highlight the Latina’s experience of mental illness to include stigma, judgement, and discrimination; including the importance of family and culture.  The psychological findings highlight the healthcare landscape lacking when providing information, education, and failing to listen the Latina when planning her care.  The psychological findings of resiliency uncovered the highly internalized personal experience of having had mental illness; specifically, major depression and highlights the manner in which these participants organized their cognitive narrative around their emotional chronical journey leading to resilience.  The results from this study illuminate the genuinely meaningful experience of recovering from major depression, and contributes insight into the clinical implications for treatment of Latino women.

  • Program/Track/Year: Clinical Psychology, A, 2018
  • Chair: Dr. Elizabeth Schewe
  • Reader: Dr. Marybeth Carter
  • External Reader: Dr. Imani Wijayaratne
  • Keywords: Simpatia, Personalismo, Psychotherapy, Resilience, Suicide, Family, Medication