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Variations in help-seeking, battered women's relationship course, emotional well-being, and experiences of abuse over time                

Author(s) Bell, Margret E., Lisa A. Goodman and Mary Ann Dutton
Title Variations in help-seeking, battered women's relationship course, emotional well-being and experiences of abuse over time
Source Psychology of Women Quarterly, 2009, Vol. 33, Issue 2, pp 149-162
Date 2009
Document type Journal article
Coverage USA
Summary This study explores how women's relationship course over a one year period related to their emotional well-being and experiences of violence in the same period. The data was collected as part of a longitudinal study of women seeking help for intimate partner violence. After the initial interview phone interviews were conducted with the participants every three months over the next year. A number of instruments were used to measure emotional well-being, PTSD symptoms, overall satisfaction with their quality of life, experience of violence, psychological abuse, and stalking. It was found that there were few significant differences between the relationship course groups with regard to mental health and quality of life. A possible explanation of this is that battered women struggle with a number of stressors and, for example, ending a relationship may create custody issues or the need to find employment. The results also suggested that the women who stayed together had their PTSD symptomology improve more rapidly than the group who were together then apart. Implications for intervention are discussed and it is proposed that under certain circumstances it may be possible to resolve or reduce the risk of violence while remaining in the relationship.
Keywords Domestic violence; intimate partner violence; help-seeking; longitudinal study

Domestic violence