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Disclosure of wife abuse among Northeastern Thai women

  • Author(s) / Creator(s)
  • In this feminist grounded theory study, sixteen Northeastern Thai women with wife abuse experiences were interviewed with reflexive discussion and a balanced power relationship. Through the constant comparative method, “Moving to Disclosure for Survival” emerged as the process by which the women concealed the abuse to survive revictimization and then disclosed to survive critical circumstances. Under prejudice regarding wife abuse in Thai society, the women concealed their abuse by: covering, isolating, silencing or revising, in order to protect their sense of self and safety, and their husbands’ image or family well-being in spite of repression, fear or psychosomatic symptoms resulting from keeping a secret. As the abuse continued and escalated, the women moved to reveal their stories by yielding, hinting, telling or sharing to release tension, seeking support, getting through the unbearable point or being free from abuse. The women’s decisions about disclosure also were influenced by wife abuse myths, confidants’ attributes and responses and abuse characteristics. Following disclosure, some women had negative experiences, including shame and guilt, as well as being blamed, revictimized and/or gossiped about. Positively, some of the women felt relieved, had increased self-worth and obtained support. The findings provide authentic understanding that abused women are not passive, but capable of surviving by concealing or disclosing. Approaching the women with a respectful and non-revictimizing manner is an initial step in empowering them to raise their voice for further assistance and service accessibility.

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  • Type of Item
    Article (Published)
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  • License
    Attribution 3.0 International
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  • Citation for previous publication
    • Rujiraprasert, N., Sripichyakan, K., Kantaruksa, K., Baosoung, C., Kushner, K.E. (2009). Disclosure of wife abuse among Northeastern Thai women. Thai Journal of Nursing Research, 13(4), 332-346.