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NCJ Number: 49761 Find in a Library
Title: BATTERED WIVES
Journal: BRITISH JOURNAL OF PSYCHIATRY, (1974)  Pages:433-441
Author(s): P D SCOTT
Date Published: 1974
Page Count: 9
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: SOCIAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL ASPECTS OF WIFE ABUSE ARE REVIEWED, WITH ATTENTION TO THE CHARACTERISTICS OF ABUSE, CULTURAL FACTORS, PSYCHOPATHOLOGY, REPORTING, AND POLICE PROTECTION FACTORS.
Abstract: A BATTERED WIFE IS A WOMAN WHO HAS SUFFERED SERIOUS OR REPEATED PHYSICAL INJURY AT THE HANDS OF THE MAN WITH WHOM SHE LIVES, AND ALTHOUGH THE INTENSITY AND EXTENT OF BATTERING CAN BE GRADED, THE INCIDENCE OF SUCH ABUSE IS NOT YET KNOWN. MANY VARIETIES OF BATTERED WIVES WILL TAKE ADVANTAGE OF HELP IF IT IS AVAILABLE. HOWEVER, BATTERING IS NOT A CLINICAL ENTITY; RATHER IT IS ONE POSSIBLE RESULT OF A VARIETY OF SOCIAL, PSYCHOLOGICAL, AND PSYCHIATRIC FACTORS AND IS BEST TREATED AS A FAILURE OF ADAPTATION OR AS A FAILURE TO ACQUIRE ADEQUATE SOCIAL LEARNING AND NOT AS A DISEASE. CLASSIFICATION OF THIS DIVERSE CONDITION IS ESSENTIAL, AND MOST OF THE CLASSIFICATIONS OF DEVIANT BEHAVIOR AND CRIMINALITY CAN BE APPLIED. A VARIETY OF PSYCHOLOGICAL CONDITIONS UNDERLIE THE BATTERING PROBLEM, INCLUDING IMMATURE PERSONALITIES; OTHER PERSONALITY DISORDERS, NOTABLY THE DEPENDENT AND AGGRESSIVE TYPES; JEALOUSY REACTIONS, WHICH RANGE FROM INTOLERANCE OF COMPETITION TO DELUSIONAL JEALOUSY; CERTAIN ADDICTIONS (I.E., ALCOHOL, DRUGS) WHICH PROBABLY MORE OFTEN COEXIST WITH BATTERING RATHER THAN CAUSE IT; AND PRACTICALLY ALL THE PSYCHIATRIC ILLNESSES. THE FREQUENTLY OBSERVED RETURN OF A BATTERED SPOUSE SUGGESTS SADO-MASOCHISM, BUT THIS IS PROBABLY LESS COMMON THAN IS SUPPOSED, BECAUSE OTHER CONDITIONS OFTEN STIMULATE A RETURN, ESPECIALLY DEPENDENCY, FEAR OF LONELINESS, AND IGNORANCE OF ANY ALTERNATIVE RELATIONSHIPS. IN PSYCHIATRIC PRACTICE, IT IS COMMON TO FIND BATTERING FAMILIES AS OPPOSED TO A BATTERING HUSBAND OR FATHER. A BATTERING HUSBAND IS OFTEN A BATTERING FATHER, AND HE MAY WELL RECEIVE A GREAT DEAL OF AGGRESSION HIMSELF. THE BATTERED MOTHER IS QUITE LIKELY A BATTERING MOTHER AS WELL. POLICE PROTECTION, LIKE ALL OTHER DEMONSTRATIONS OF POWER, IS MORE EFFECTIVE IN THEORY THAN IN PRACTICE. A GREAT DEAL MORE NEEDS TO BE KNOWN ABOUT THE BATTERING PROBLEM AND THE GREATEST NEED IS FOR SOCIOLOGICAL AND EPIDEMIOLOGICAL DATA INDICATING THE SCOPE OF THE PROBLEM AND THE ATTITUDES OF THOSE INVOLVED TOWARD SOCIAL AGENCY ASSISTANCE. FURTHER, BECAUSE OF THE VARIETY OF THE FACTORS INVOLVED, IT IS ESSENTIAL TO PROMOTE A CLOSE LIAISON BETWEEN COMPETENT AGENCIES (I.E., THE POLICE, THE CHURCH, HOSPITALS, HOUSING AUTHORITIES). OTHER MUCH NEEDED PROGRAMS INCLUDE A CENTRALLY PLACED 24-HOUR ADVISORY SERVICE, SHORT-TERM SHELTER FACILITIES FOR WIVES AND CHILDREN, AND A CONTINUING PROGRAM OF LOCAL AND NATIONAL EDUCATION. TABULAR DATA AND REFERENCES ARE PROVIDED. (KBL)
Index Term(s): Alcohol-Related Offenses; Child abuse; Domestic relations; Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC); Police responsibilities; Psychology; Public Attitudes/Opinion; Public education; Socioculture; Welfare services
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=49761

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