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Nurs Res. 1989 Jan-Feb;38(1):18-24.

A test of two explanatory models of women's responses to battering.

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  • 1College of Nursing, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI.


Two theoretical models, grief and learned helplessness, were compared for relative explanatory applicability for responses of women to battering. Ninety-seven battered women were compared with 96 nonbattered women who were also having serious problems in an intimate relationship with a man. The two groups were similar on the majority of model variables, including self-esteem (TSCS), self-care agency (DSCAI), self-blame, depression (BDI), and control in the relationship. Both groups scored significantly below normative groups in self-esteem. The battered women had more frequent and severe physical symptoms of stress and grief and had thought of or tried more solutions to the relationship problems. Both models had significant explanatory power, especially for battered women, and were equally applicable for formulating theory and nursing care interventions.

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