• Brexit and its psychological impact: A qualitative study on the well-being of EU-citizens based in the UK

      Shepman, Astrid; Reimers, Kristin (University of Chester, 2018)
      Research on the relationship between well-being and environmental factors demonstrated that adverse living conditions and extreme life events can have temporary or longer lasting effects on the well-being of individuals, depending on the severity of the event and the resilience of those affected. This qualitative study aimed to investigate how Brexit impacted the well-being of EU-citizens living in the UK. By applying thematic analysis, 43 testimonies of individuals who shared their personal Brexit story, were analysed, revealing three main themes: ‘living with uncertainty’, ‘experiencing discrimination’ and ‘identity questioned’. Discussing these themes in light of previous research, this study suggests Brexit affected contributor’s subjective, psychological and social well-being negatively and was potentially traumatising for individuals of vulnerable groups. Although the majority of EU-citizens are likely to recover to their former level of well-being after Brexit, further studies on this population are needed to investigate how many EU-citizens are in need of professional help to overcome the psychological impact Brexit had on their lives. “Brexit means Brexit” for Theresa May but what it means for EU-citizens living in the UK seems to be defined by their current living situation and their resilience.