Fighting for survival and escape from violence: Interviews with battered women

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M. E. Häggblom, Anette ; R. Möller, Anders (2010)
  • Publisher: Co-Action Publishing
  • Journal: International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health and Well-being (issn: 1748-2631, eissn: 1748-2631)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.3402/qhw.v2i3.4957

The present study is a qualitative study aiming at explaining and understanding the experience of being battered. It explores the act of searching for help, from the health service and others, and the ending of abusive relationships. In-depth interviews were conducted with nine battered women. The study adopted a grounded theory method and produced an emerging core category fighting for survival and escape, and three key categories: having a personal construct of violence, struggling to cope with the violence, and feeling a need for support. The women with deep internal scars struggled to understand and to recover from the violence. They struggled between feeling guilty and feeling innocent. In the process of leaving, an important other, often a friend, played a supportive role in creating an inner strength within the woman, which enabled her to break up. Supportive professionals found relevant solutions and helped the women to maintain their new situation, while other professionals revictimized the women. We conclude that battered women with enhanced support include affirmation, information, and safety leading to increased survival and recovery. Key words: Intimate partner violence, battered women, violence against women, grounded theory
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