Abulon, Edna Luz R.*
Philippine Normal University, Philippines (email@example.com)
Spousal abuse is a social problem that pervades many societies worldwide. Breaking through such bondage was indeed a memorable saga as depicted in this study. Six women described their experiences of abuse and their respective life trajectories towards freedom and recovery. The study further draws implications of this phenomenon to counseling, women advocacy and tertiary education; and eventually offered a theoretical framework of the breaking through process. This investigation utilized the case study approach, using the in-depth interview method. Six women between 28 to 57 years old participated in this study. All of them were married but left their husbands. They experienced the cycle of abuse from 2 to 28 years. The case studies show how the six women lived a tormented life in the hands of the ones who give them sweet and everlasting promises. Their traumatic experience nevertheless propelled them to demonstrate resiliency which enables them to survive the trauma and recover from it. In the breaking through process, the availability of social support was found to be very important. The recovery stage commenced after women leave the cycle of abuse. Their endurance of the spousal abuse for years allows them to develop and push advocacies to help other women who share the same experiences. Through the rediscovery of the self, battered women are able to highlight their own strengths, thus, were able to craft a new concept of the self through self- empowerment.
Keywords: spousal abuse; self-concept; resiliency; social support; self-empowerment