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Table 1 Elements mentioned by interviewees

From: Experiential peer support and its effects on desistance from delinquent behavior: protocol paper for a systematic realist literature review

Mechanism Important elements according to interviewees
Empathy and acceptance The experiential peer is not judgmental1,3,4; shows positive regard for the recipient1; is not occupied with truth-seeking3, and sees the recipient as an equal3,4
Social learning The recipient might learn to deal with criminogenic factors1, build resilience against negative imaging and stigmas3, and acquire the wish to also contribute to society2. The experiential peer might help the individual to make sure that his or her survival behavior is not carried over into the outside world3.
Social bonding The relationship with the experiential peer might be a trusting relationship4; the experiential peer might help with closure of former (negative or damaged) relationships and dealing with this grief1,3
Social control The experiential peer might be quicker to see through the client’s motives1, might feel more comfortable correcting the client1,4, and might be able to ask critical questions3
Narrative and identity formation Through the support of an experiential peer, the recipient might be empowered (related to their identity)1,4, embrace the past2, complete his or her narrative3, and gain a sense of agency3
Hope and perspective The experiential peer might provide hope2,3,4, might enable the individual to envision an alternative future1,3, and might be someone who believes in the individual3
Translation and connection The experiential peer might form a connection between the individual and formal care1,3 and might translate between the client and formal care1
  1. 1Lector juvenile delinquency and researcher; 2Experiential peer (mental health care) and researcher; 3Experiential peer (forensic mental health care) and trainer, 4Experiential peer (no training) and formal care provider