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Violence Against Women. 1997 Feb;3(1):5-26.

Working toward freedom from violence. The process of change in battered women.

Abstract

PIP:

This article proposes using the transtheoretical model of behavior change to improve understanding of how battered women change their lives so that eventually these changes can be systematically and quantifiably measured. After a brief introduction, the article reviews currently applied outcome measures and notes that they fail to measure the internal changes that allow battered women to change. The next section reviews what is known about the process of change, pointing out that it is no easier for a battered woman to leave her abuser than for a person to adopt any other seemingly simple health-giving behavior (cessation of smoking, exercise, dietary change). This section notes that some agencies for battered women have intuitively developed programs that respond to the stages the women must go through when changing their lives. The article continues with a description of the transtheoretical model of behavior change, which assumes that behavior change is dynamic and is constructed with a recognition of stages of change, processes of change, decisional balance, and self-efficacy. Each of these constructs is discussed and applied to the situation faced by battered women. The article concludes that, while the model as it exists addresses many of the issues that battered women face in their attempt to overcome abuse, to be as useful as possible, researchers must determine what must be added to or changed in the model to make it completely relevant to this application.

PMID:
12349116
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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