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An Exploration of the Role of Employment as a Coping Resource for Women Experiencing Intimate Partner Abuse

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There has been a growing interest amongst researchers and practitioners regarding the various coping strategies adopted by women experiencing intimate partner abuse (IPA). These studies have tended to adopt and adapt the stress-coping model developed by Lazarus and Folkman (1984) and thus make the distinction between emotion and problem-solving coping strategies and the resources available for women to cope. Even though, contemporary coping scholars acknowledge the role of employment and coping, it is still unclear as to how employment facilitates women's coping strategies. Drawing on findings from a qualitative study, this article explores how employment and workplace environments provide survivors of IPA with resources that allow them to cope with the abuse. By incorporating theoretical insights developed in the field of organizational studies, namely boundary work and organizational identities, these findings develop our understanding of the role of employment in survivors' coping strategies. Finally, the findings demonstrate the valuable contribution of interdisciplinarity in furthering our knowledge of coping strategies and the positive aspects of employment for survivors of IPA.
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Keywords: BOUNDARY WORK; COPING STRATEGIES; EMPLOYMENT; IDENTITY THEORY; INTIMATE PARTNER ABUSE

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2014

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