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Managing victim status in group therapy for men: A discourse analysis



Author(s)Zverina, Michaela, Henderikus J. Stam and Robbie Babins-Wagner
Title Managing victim status in group therapy for men: A discourse analysis
Source Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 2011, Vol.26, No. 14, pp2834-2855
Date 2011
Document type Journal article
Coverage Canada
Summary The aim of this study was to explore the identity constructions and related negations of abuse conceptualisations among abused men participating in group psychotherapy. The participants in the 14 week therapeutic group programs held at the Calgary Counselling Centre were male victims of violence in an intimate heterosexual relationship. A significant finding was the identity work consistent across the sessions, in which the men actively took up positions against assertions that men were abusers and not victims. The men's status as a victim of violence was not automatically granted by participation in the group. The role of the facilitator was also examined, including their suggestions of topics for conversation and the therapeutic strategies they employed. It was apparent to the authors that the major, but unstated, goal of the group was to work through the uncertainty of what it means for men to be abused.
Keywords Intimate partner violence; intimate partner abuse; IPA; male abuse; resistance; discourse analysis

Psychological effects and treatment