The Impact of The Freedom Programme on Construing, Coping and Symptomatology in Women who have Experienced Intimate Partner Violence: a Personal Construct Approach
Clarke, Sarah Maria
The overall aim of the present research is to contribute to the literature base regarding interventions for women who have experienced Intimate Partner Violence (IPV). The research utilised questionnaires and repertory grid technique to investigate the impact of The Freedom Programme, a group intervention for women who have experienced IPV. 24 participants at pre-intervention and 18 participants at post-intervention completed the measures. The findings suggest that the intervention can be beneficial in terms of lowering: severity of symptoms; utilisation of emotionally focused coping strategies, utilisation of less helpful coping strategies and Triadic Conflict (Bell, 2004). There was a tightening of construing at post-intervention. Participants reported the most helpful aspects of the intervention were ‘Universality’ and ‘Personal Contact’. The most unhelpful aspects were finding it difficult to speak in a group context and the practicalities of the group. The author concludes that the programme provides a valuable first step for women who have experienced IPV, however, development of services that follow on from the intervention need to be more focused to meet individual needs. Recommendations for future research include more longitudinal research, which encompasses Randomised Control Trail methodology reviewing packages of support. There is also a need to conduct research with harder to access women who have experienced IPV.