Psychotherapy in domestic violence contexts


Abstract


In 2004, a representative study on violence against women was published for the first time in Germany and demonstrated its large extent. Affected women have to deal with manifold health consequences. Violence mostly takes place in the domestic sphere. It is usually the male partner who commits violence disclosing strucutal gender inequalities that continue to exist. In this article, I review the psychological effects of violence in intimate relationships from a clinical and critical perspective. I close with considerations on psychotherapeutic consequences for the treatment of domestic violence. Focus is on understandings of health and illness, related diagnostic challenges and therapeutic techniques.

Keywords: Domestic violence, posttraumatic stress disorder, feminist psychotherapy

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