Mental Health and Becoming a Teacher: A Narrative on the Experiences and Identities of Teacher Candidates
MetadataShow full item record
This study used narrative inquiry to shed light on the identity development of teacher candidates who experienced mental health issues during teacher education programs. The study sought to examine (a) stories that teacher candidates tell about being in a teacher education program while experiencing mental health issues; (b) identity development of teachers who have experienced mental health issues; and (c) how narratives of teacher candidates and beginning teachers challenge stereotyping and stigmatization. Through discussion and letter correspondence, the participants and I shared stories that represented our lived experiences. The study explored our stories using the 3 commonplaces of temporality, sociality, and place from a theoretical framework of narrative inquiry. Four themes emerged from the data analysis: the stigmatization of mental health issues; dealing with conflict; the need for a safe and supportive environment; and the complexity of mental health issues. This study contributes to the literature by exploring the lived experiences of teacher candidates and beginning teachers with mental health issues. The narratives inform teacher education programs, the teaching profession, and the mental health field.