Females Appraisal Distortions in Intimate Partner Relationships
Intimate partner violence (IPV) initiated by women is vastly under researched compared to violence initiated by men. Socially, the quest to understand IPV has almost exclusively focused on violence perpetrated by men and the bulk of research on the topic has followed suite (Heise et al., 1999; Williams, 2004) Data indicates that most violence occurring within heterosexual relationships is bidirectional. (Hines, 2007; Hamby, 2009). The aim of this thesis is to examine the common themes and distortions that occur as women engage in violence within their relationships. Building on the existing work, this work specifically looks at appraisal distortions of women during IPV. Researchers recruited participants for this study using snowball sampling. The participants for this study consisted of 13 African American women (n=13) using a semi-structured interview procedure to examine their cognitive processes while using violence. Interviews of participants were conducted by phone and the interviews were recorded and coded for themes. The analysis of the results revealed that the most common appraisal distortions were rationalization and blaming. Implications for further research with diverse populations, interventions that promote empathy and increasing skills in recognizing the influence of emotional processing and cognitive distortions are discussed.