A Glimpse Inside: Examining Loob from the Life Stories of Center-Based Filipino Children in Conflict with the Law

Document Type


Publication Date



This study is a reexamination of the life stories of 10 male, center-based, Filipino children in conflict with the law (CICL) focusing on the most prominent descriptions of their loob or inner self before entering the youth rehabilitation center, during their commitment at the center, and after they leave the center. Participants were 18–22 years old during the interviews but were charged with committing an offense as minors. An adapted life story interview guide was used to conduct in-depth, face-to-face, semi-structured interviews with the CICL which elicited stories of their past, present, and future. REC-approved protocols and research guidelines for juvenile justice populations were followed in gathering data. Thematic analysis showed that almost all the CICL had sama ng loob or resentments in the past, experienced pagbabagong-loob or a sense of renewal in the present, and expressed their desire to make up by giving back to others in the future because of their utang na loob or sense of gratitude to those who have helped them. The development of the inner self of the CICL from past to present to the future can be described as Nagibâ-Nabubuo-Babawi or Collapsed-Taking Shape-Giving Back. Findings of the study provide a glimpse of the inner self of the CICL from their perspective. It highlights the dynamic movement of the CICL’s inner self which has implications for prevention, intervention, and rehabilitation efforts in relation to youth offending.