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Advanced medical technology creates hope for ventilator-dependent patients under home-based care. However, family caregiving for patients with home mechanical ventilation (HMV) is associated with a particularly heavy workload. Greater understanding an experience as a family caregiver providing care for a loved one dependent on HMV is needed for the benefit of healthcare providers. The aim of this paper is to analyze in detail ‘being in the midst of a storm and labyrinth of suffering’, one category of a substantive theory on family caregiving for patients with HMV. This category was developed from a grounded theory study of 22 family caregivers of patients with HMV. Data were collected by using in-depth interviews and participant observations and analyzed by using constant comparison of Strauss and Corbin’s version of grounded theory. The study revealed the caregiving process for patients with HMV is as being in the midst of a storm and labyrinth of suffering, which can be explained in the following three sub-categories: (i) feeling incompetent and fear; (ii) managing competing demands and (iii) being overwhelmed. The results of this study highlight suffering as experienced by family caregivers of patients with HMV in Thailand. Understanding of this caregiving process can guide the development of interventions to enhance family caregivers’ abilities to provide good care for patients with HMV and to alleviate suffering from the
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