Normblind gedrag en omgangsongemak | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 90, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0025-9454
  • E-ISSN: 1876-2816



In recent years, anti-stigma strategies have been developed to diminish prejudiced attitudes to people with a mental disorder. One of the strategies involves organised social contact. ‘Befriending services’ deliver such connections. We assumed that voluntary befrienders might regularly feel uneasy in these circumstances as the behaviour of people with a mental disorder can be socially disruptive when they deviate from self-evident social norms. This ‘residual irregularity’ (Scheff) often appears to be the cause of social discomfort for the befriending contacts. Through in-depth interviews with voluntary befrienders, we obtained an understanding of the irregular behaviour of the befriended individuals and about what causes the befriending contacts to feel uncomfortable as well as the character of their uneasiness. We found six types of this residual deviant behaviour and accompanying types of discomfort.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): contact strategies; residual deviance; social discomfort; social norms; stigma
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