Turning Points: Critical Incidents Prompting Survivors to Begin the Process of Terminating Abusive Relationships

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Christine E. Murray, Associate Professor (Creator)
Institution
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/

Abstract: The decision whether to leave an abusive relationship is very complex for victims. A small but growing body of research demonstrates the importance of turning points in these decisions. Situated within the theoretical framework of the Transtheoretical Model of Change, this study uses a phenomenological data analysis process to analyze the descriptions of turning points provided by a sample of 123 survivors of past abusive relationships who had been out of any abusive relationships for at least 2 years. Six distinct themes of turning points are identified: (a) facing the threat of severe violence; (b) changing their perspective about the relationship, abuse, and/or their partner; (c) learning about the dynamics of abuse; (d) experiencing an intervention from external sources or consequences; (e) realizing the impact of the violence on children; and (f) the relationship being terminated by the abuser or some other cause. Implications for research, counseling practice, and theory are discussed.

Additional Information

Publication
The Family Journal
Language: English
Date: 2015
Keywords
intimate partner violence, domestic violence, turning points, transtheoretical model of change

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