Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
thesis_access.pdf (1.66 MB)

Imprisonment: Young Pacific womens' experiences of living with depression

Download (1.66 MB)
posted on 2021-11-15, 13:56 authored by Muaiava, Aotearoa

Research has shown that depression is prevalent in adolescence. This descriptive phenomenological study explored the lived experiences of young Pacific Island (PI) women (17-25 years of age) living in New Zealand. Phenomenological interviewing was used to capture the lived experiences of depression with the aim of developing a deeper understanding of what it is like to be a young depressed PI woman. The essence of being depressed was imprisonment. Young PI women described how family and cultural pressures, experiences of failure and abuse led to their depression. They experienced rejection, being labelled, misunderstood and silenced by others and their circumstances and depression trapped them. The women managed their depression by finding their voice in writing journals, listening to music, reading bible scriptures, prayer and connecting to others with similar lived experience. The implications of the study are discussed in relation to improving parent education and culturally relevant support for young PI women. Recommendations for future research include developing approaches to research that include a more specific cultural and gender focus.


Copyright Date


Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline


Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Arts

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code

970113 Expanding Knowledge in Education

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

School of Education


Bowden, Chris