Intimate Partner Violence Example

What Constitutes Intimate Partner Violence? Intimate Partner Violence (IPV), as defined by Wallace, is an abuse that occurs between two people engaged in a close relationship—intimate partners. IPV comprises any violence or abuse being inflicted by an abuser, usually a man, to an abused woman. It includes physical violence—punches, assaults, slaps and kicks; psychological violence—intimidation, confiscation of earnings, preventing her to socialize with family and friends and withholding of resources; and sexual violence—verbal threats, rape, physical advances and unwanted touching (1998).

Why Does She Stay? The first part of Barnett’s article features the external inhibiting factors within the society that affect the decision of an abused woman on whether to leave or stay in a relationship with his abusive partner. Among these factors are patriarchal state of the society, woman’s economic dependency and the shortcomings of the criminal justice system to address the situation (2000). The woman’s economic dependency to her spouse is due mainly to her familial responsibilities that force her to take time off employment to look after the children.

Business policies also dictate women’s labor participation in the industry—considering women as the secondary provider of the family. Thus, due to this specific external inhibiting factor, leaving an abusive partner will be a second option for a battered woman, since leaving him will mean poor living and unsafe life for her and her children. On the other hand, the second part of Barnett’s article reviews and adds external inhibiting factors and discusses internal inhibiting factors that hinder battered women to leave violent relationship.

These factors are, according to Barnett, the traits of the victim, socialization processes and effects and psychological and victimization events (2001). The woman’s socialization may affect her decision on whether to stay or leave the violent relationship. If the woman will choose to leave, she may lose her identity as another person’s partner. She may be separated from her home and employment and from the school of her children, if she has to move. Leaving her old life will mean living a new one. Thus, the future socialization experience contributes significantly to the battered woman’s decision of leaving or staying.

Dr. Leonore Walker is generally credited with introducing the concept of the “Battered Woman Syndrome. ” 1. Describe the necessary underlying elements of the syndrome. Battered Woman Syndrome, as described by Walker, is the cluster of psychological symptoms developed in women who are living in a violent relationship. This syndrome, as illustrated by Walker, follows the stages of the Cycle Violence Theory. The first stage is the tension-building phase wherein tension between couples may rise—the woman develops fear with her partner and may attempt to leave him.

Second stage, is the acute battering phase where the man loses control. This stage involves physical and emotional injuries. Third is the honeymoon phase where the man typically feels sorry for what he has done and promises never to hurt the woman again. This period is characterized by love and calm behaviors, wherein the abused woman is being convinced that her partner did not intent to hurt her (2000). 2. Discuss how Barnett’s articles support or undercut Walker’s concept. The Battered Woman Syndrome, based on Walker, has four characteristics.

First, the woman victim claims to be the reason or the cause of the violence. Second, she is unable to point out the responsibility of violence to anyone or anything. Third, the woman concerns for her life and the lives of her children. Fourth, the woman believes that the abuser is powerful over her (2000). In view to this, Barnett writing on External Inhibiting Factors supports the third and fourth characteristics of a battered woman. The two of the external inhibiting factors that hinder abused woman to leave violent relationship are the woman’s economic dependency and the patriarchal state of the society.

In the third characteristic, the woman’s concerns for her and her children’s life are dependent on the woman’s economic dependency to man. Nonetheless, the fourth implies the higher state of man in the society over the woman (2001). Accordingly, the first and the second characteristics of the Battered Woman Syndrome are in line with the claim of Barnett on his article, Internal Inhibiting Factors. Abuse may cause psychological effects to the woman that she will intend to put all the blame of the violence on her rather than to her abusive partner.Depression is the common result of the violence, with 60% of battered women reporting this. (2000).


Barnett, O. W. (2000). Why battered women do not leave, part 1: External inhibiting factors within society. Trauma, Violence, & Abuse. 1, 343-372. Barnett, O. W. (2001). Why battered women do not leave, part 2: External inhibiting factors – social support and internal inhibiting factors. Trauma, Violence, & Abuse. 2, 3-35. Wallace, H. (1998) Victimology: Legal, Psychological, and Social Perspectives. Boston: Allyn and Bacon. Walker, L. E. (2000). The battered woman syndrome. New York: Springer Publishing Company, Inc.