Maintaining Continuing Bonds in Bereavement: A Participatory Design Process of Be.side
17162
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Maintaining Continuing Bonds in Bereavement: A Participatory Design Process of Be.side

Year

2024

Abstract

During the grieving process, physical objects often serve as catalysts for remembering and honouring the relationship with departed loved ones. Leveraging a participatory design approach, we created Be.side, a fully customisable multi-modal artefact that incorporates scent, sound, and heartbeat stimulation and acts as a touch-point between the deceased and the bereaved. We conducted a four-week study with three participants to understand how the artefact, continuously attuned to each participant, helped to continue bonds with the deceased. Our results show that Be.side’s bespoke elements helped participants to evoke memories of the deceased. Participants created personalised rituals for remembrance. They sustained bonds by not only interacting with Be.side but also participating in the research. Finally, highlighting that remembrance can both provide comfort and deepen sadness, we discuss future design considerations.

Category
Article
Tags
KMD