Does Self-Blame Moderate Psychological Adjustment Following Intimate Partner Violence?


This study explored whether self-blame moderates the relationship between exposure to specific types of abuse and both poor general psychological adjustment (i.e., self-esteem) and specific symptomatology (i.e., posttraumatic stress disorder [PTSD]) among women who had experienced intimate partner violence (IPV). Eighty female IPV survivors were involved in this study. Results indicated that self-blame was negatively associated with self-esteem for physical, psychological, and sexual abuse. Self-blame moderated physical abuse, such that high levels of physical abuse interacted with high levels of self-blame in their association with PTSD. Nonsignificant models were noted for psychological and sexual abuse in association with self-blame and PTSD. These findings support the conceptualization that self-blame is associated with both general and specific psychological outcomes in the aftermath of IPV. Future research examining different forms of blame associated with IPV might further untangle inconsistencies in the self-blame literature.

Publication Title

Journal of Interpersonal Violence