Title

A Grounded Theory Study of How Couples Desist from Intimate Partner Violence

Keywords

Intimate partner violence, couples therapy, grounded theory

Abstract

Intimate partner violence is a common and damaging experience for many couples, and therapists struggle to address it adequately (Johnson, 2008). Despite its negative effects, many violent couples stay together, with some stopping their violent behaviors. Unfortunately, we know little about the systemic factors affecting violence desistance. This study used grounded theory methods to analyze the process of desistance in formerly violent couples. A model of desistance consisting of three categories was developed, which for most couples included a (a) Turning Point, (b) Decision to Change, and (c) Doing Things Differently. Therapists are encouraged to use the model to better understand the varied and systemic nature of violence and desistance, and to make more sophisticated decisions about referral and treatment.

Original Publication Citation

Lisa V. Merchant & Jason B. Whiting (2017) A Grounded Theory Study of How Couples Desist from Intimate Partner Violence, Journal of Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, DOI: 10.1111/jmft.12278

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date

2017-12-01

Publisher

Wiley

Language

English

College

Family, Home, and Social Sciences

Department

Family Life

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor

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