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The Forgotten Survivor: The Articulated Needs of Survivors of Psychological and Economic Abuse Who Stay
Violence and Gender  (IF),  Pub Date : 2020-12-08, DOI: 10.1089/vio.2020.0007
Tracy G. Crump

Despite improvements, extant research and praxis has not yet given sufficient attention to nonphysical forms of intimate partner violence, including psychological and economic abuse. Furthermore, interventions for survivors (from clinicians, helpline workers, and other types of domestic violence advocates) are heavily geared toward needs associated with leaving an abusive relationship. Therefore, victims of nonphysical abuse who intend to stay in the relationship are tending to be overlooked. Based on in-depth interviews with 20 women who were experiencing psychological and economic abuse and intended to stay in the relationship, this study identified six unmet needs among that population: (1) to identify the causes of the current abusive situation; (2) to understand the effects of abuse; (3) to de-escalate hostility and talk through issues calmly and without blame, judgment, or accusation; (4) to explain to a social support team the decision to remain in the relationship; (5) to develop an individualized plan of action to address the abuse; and (6) to share advice with others in similar situations. Based on these needs, recommendations for future scholarship and praxis are offered.