Article Title: Intimate Partner Violence and Psychological Distress: Mediating Role of Stockholm Syndrome
Author(s): Amna Ahmad, Mudassar Aziz, Gulnaz Anjum, and Farah V. Mir
Institute(s): National Institute of Psychology, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad.
Journal: Pakistan Journal of Psychological Research, 2018, Vol. 33, No. 2, 541-557
Correspondence Address: Mudassar Aziz, Institute of Business Administration, Karachi, Pakistan. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Intimate Partner Violence and its physical and psychological effects have been extensively studied. What the literature still lacks is the understanding of the role of Stockholm Syndrome in explaining the relationship between Intimate Partner Violence and Psychological Distress, especially in a non-Western setting. Psychological Distress is considered as a natural consequence of Intimate Partner Violence, the present study explored victims choosing to justify the abuse they experienced, hence, diminishing the negative psychological effects. The current study undertakes Stockholm Syndrome as a mediator between Intimate Partner Violence and Psychological Distress in a community sample of 212 individuals in married or dating relationships (from the cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi, Pakistan). The three aspects of Stockholm Syndrome; Core Stockholm Syndrome; rationalising abuse through distorted cognitions, Psychological Damage; negative effects of ongoing abuse, and Love-Dependence; the belief that survival is only possible through the love and compassion of the abuser, were tested as mediators. The analyses revealed that Core Stockholm Syndrome did not mediate the relationship between Intimate Partner Violence and Psychological Distress. Although, Psychological Damage fully mediated the said relationship, and Love-Dependence partially mediated the direct effect of Intimate Partner Violence on Psychological Distress.
Keywords: Intimate partner violence, Stockholm syndrome, psychological distress