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The purpose of this qualitative study was to illustrate how the identity of Chinese older adults who lost their only child changed after the traumatic event in the context of unique culture and policy settings. The individuals studied were 14 adults over the age of 50. Each respondent was interviewed concerning his or her post-loss experiences. Results indicated that these bereaved parents are not only deeply impacted by the loss of the most loved one, but are also stigmatized by the culture and victimized by the one-child policy. The collective identity as shiduer is defined not only by personal grief but also by cultural uniqueness and the unintended consequences of the one-child policy.

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