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Mothers abused by partners see decline in mental health even after relationship ends
Date:8/24/2010

said.

The one sliver of good news was that abused women who had the support of friends and family did not show as much depression and anxiety as did women without that level of support.

"After the relationship ends, that is when these mothers really need the protection and help of their family and friends," Kamp Dush said.

Higher levels of religious involvement did not by itself protect abused mothers from depression and anxiety, the study found. However, it is possible that the religious involvement was associated with social support, and mothers received help and encouragement through people they met through their church activities, Adkins said.

Adkins, who is currently a family therapist working with domestic violence victims, said the results are consistent with what she sees in her practice.

"People often wonder why abused women don't leave their partners," she said. "But as this study shows, things aren't necessarily better after you leave an abuser, at least right away. It's a difficult process."

But these results shouldn't dissuade abused mothers from leaving their partners, particularly when there are safety concerns to themselves or to their children, she said.

"The number one reason to leave is safety, not only for the mothers but for their children as well. While things may not get better right away, we only looked at up to two years after the relationship ended. We're not sure what happens after that," Adkins said.


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Contact: Claire Kamp Dush
Kamp-dush.1@osu.edu
614-247-2126
Ohio State University
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2 3

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