Partner – Emotional

The psychological symptoms caused or exacerbated by the incident or pattern of incidents (for example, depression, anxiety)

The psychological symptoms caused or exacerbated by the incident or pattern of incidents (for example, depression, anxiety):

  1. extremely impacted the overall level of functioning
  2. highly impacted the overall level of functioning
  3. somewhat impacted the overall level of functioning
  4. did not impact the overall level of functioning.

Overview:

Example:

Video Transcript:

Overview:

For this item, it’s related to the current snapshot of functioning in the individual, but you want to be thinking about their psychological symptoms. So are they showing symptoms of depression, anxiety, and how would that impact their overall level of functioning? Anchoring yourself back to the alleged maltreatment incident, how is it related to the maltreatment in question?

Example:

For this item, you need to focus on two things: fear/anxiety caused or exacerbated by the maltreatment AND the impact on overall level of functioning.

Sometimes, clinicians focus on the fear/anxiety – like the partner was really scared during the incident – but do not think about overall level of functioning. Overall level of functioning requires you to think about the partner’s behavior in relevant domains – home, work, social functions – and how it impacts the partner?

For example, the husband and wife agreed to a trial separation. Husband heard wife had male co-worker and friend of the couple’s at house to cut the lawn. Husband called the co-worker/friend, and told him to stay away from his wife. He also sent a group text message to the wife and co-worker saying she was embarrassing them by having a man other than her husband at their home. When the wife defended herself as doing nothing wrong, the husband started sending threatening texts telling her she could do it again, but he would not be as patient and there would be consequences for her and her “friend.” He has a history of angry outbursts and things had gotten physical between them before.

Wife reports that she sometimes gets anxious when she hears her phone alert that she has a text, worried it might be her husband sending angry, threatening texts. She said she’s a little anxious given her husband’s outburst, and has considered changing her phone number.

Now, say the wife got reprimanded at work for checking her cell phone too frequently – like she often stepped out of meetings to look, or her boss saw her on a work call with her cell phone on her lap – and she reported the checking was out of fear or anxiety that her husband might be sending angry texts – that would be highly impacted.

The somatic symptoms caused or exacerbated by the incident or pattern of incidents (for example, aches and pains, migraine, gastrointestinal problems)

The somatic symptoms caused or exacerbated by the incident or pattern of incidents (for example, aches and pains, migraine, gastrointestinal problems):

  1. extremely impacted the overall level of functioning
  2. highly impacted the overall level of functioning
  3. somewhat impacted the overall level of functioning
  4. did not impact the overall level of functioning.

Overview:

Example:

Video Transcript:

Overview:

Somatic symptoms are some of the more challenging symptoms to tease out when doing your interview process. With adults, it is somewhat easier than with children. You can directly ask how they are doing in terms of general aches and pains, headaches, migraines, or stomachaches, and see if that was happening before the maltreatment (and if so did it get worse after the maltreatment) or is it a new phenomena that is just happening following the alleged maltreatment. Also, how is it affecting the overall level of functioning in the individual.

Example:

SM husband’s co-worker noticed his uniform was torn and appeared to have been scribbled on with a black marker. SM husband told command that his wife had been angry with him for the past two months following his one-week summer visitation with his daughter from his first marriage. Wife accused him of paying more attention to his daughter than her. SM husband reported that his wife had been occasionally deleting text messages from his daughter and ex-wife, making angry comments about his ex-wife and daughter, and that after a big fight the evening prior, she started cutting his uniform and writing on them with a marker.

SM husband said since the fighting started, he’s been having chest pain, headaches, and trouble sleeping that caused him to miss two work days. He’s also having trouble focusing while on the job. Command confirms a decrease in productivity. SM husband started taking melatonin to try to sleep, but it’s not working well.

This is highly impacted functioning because the somatic symptoms are interfering with his work, and he is taking something to try to sleep.

Let’s say there were somatic symptoms, but they weren’t really impacting the overall level of functioning like, “I sometimes get headaches, but I take a pain killer and push through to get on with my day,” that would be somewhat impacted.

Extremely impacted would be going to the emergency room with chest pain and fear of a heart attack followed by hospitalization for a few days for testing and observation, but with no physical cause.

Did avoidance of emotional abuse interfere with the ability to carry out any of these five major life activities (Work, Education, Religion, Medical Services, Contact with Friends)

Did avoidance of emotional abuse interfere with the ability to carry out any of these five major life activities?

  • Work
  • Education
  • Freely participating in religious observance
  • Obtaining necessary medical or mental health services
  • Contact with family/friends
  1. Yes
  2. No

Overview:

Example:

Video Transcript: 

Overview:

For this item, think of it as the “walking on eggshells” question. What behaviors is the partner engaging in or not engaging in to avoid or decrease the emotional abuse? In this item, you are looking at our 5 major areas of functioning. You are all very familiar with (work, education, freely participating in religious observance, obtaining necessary medical or mental health services, and contact with family and friends).

Example:

For theses items, you need to think about the stereotypical, “walking on eggshells” behaviors. Is the partner changing his or her behavior, his or her actions, to avoid emotional abuse?

Instead of talking through an example here, it would be informative to think about how to best conduct an interview to get these details.

Start with open-ended prompts, and tailor your responses accordingly. Remember, you want to cover the five major areas of functioning. You could start with:

1. “Tell me about your work situation.” Tailor your follow-up questions: “Why did you stop working? What would make you go back?”

2. “Tell me about your level of education.” Depending on answer: “Why did you stop attending classes? What would make you go back?”

3. “Tell me about your spiritual or religious life.” Depending on answer: “Why did you stop practicing? What would make you go back?”

4. “Tell me about your self-care, like seeing a physician for physicals or a counselor. Depending on answer: “Why did you stop going? What would make you go back?”

5. “Tell me about your family and friends.” Depending on answer: “Why did you stop seeing them/talking to them? What would make you go back?”

With these prompts, you’re looking for a change in the behavior – hiding things from the partner, decreasing the frequency of doing something, or stopping the acts completely – in an effort to avoid the partner’s abusive emotional reaction.

What was the level of interference of the fear?

What was the level of interference of the fear?

  1. Profound change in three or more of the following areas (work, education, freely participating in religious observance, obtaining necessary medical or mental health services, contact with family/friends)
  2. Profound change in two of the following areas (work, education, freely participating in religious observance, obtaining necessary medical or mental health services, contact with family/friends)
  3. Profound change in one of the following areas (work, education, freely participating in religious observance, obtaining necessary medical or mental health services, contact with family/friends)

Overview:

Example:

Video Transcript: 

Overview:

I’m going to run through a few quick examples of what avoidance of emotional abuse looks like in each of the 5 major life activities.

Work: I used to hang out with colleagues after work, because it’s important to have those connections to network and get promoted. She would call me and then my boss if I wasn’t there within 20 minutes of clocking out because she was convinced I was having an affair. As soon as I’m done at the end of the day, I immediately leave, call, and tell her I’m on my way. She stays with me on the phone until I get into the driveway.

Education: My husband always said the wife’s place is in the home and not at school or at work. So even though I was taking a night class to become an administrative assistant, I would often find the car would be completely out of gas or he would still have the car out so I couldn’t drive to class. I eventually just stopped going because I was tired of paying and not being able to go attend classes.

Religious observance: He is from a different religion than I am and he’s always making fun of my worship in front of the kids and his friends. It just got so embarrassing. I got tired trying to sneak to services, so I just stopped going altogether.

Obtain necessary medical or mental health services: I was really feeling depressed as I got back from deployment, and my wife told me just to get over myself and she would tell my buddies that I would just lie on the couch all day and sleep. And I was seeing a shrink but she also made fun of me for that and told them I was just going to complain about her. I stopped going even though I thought it was helpful because I was tired of hearing everyone just say I should toughen up.

Contact with family and friends: My husband is constantly going into my phone and computer and checking my Facebook, and even though I was keeping in touch with local friends from home. He became very jealous whenever there was a man who I was corresponding with. I just completely limited myself to just talking to my mother on the phone while he’s at home so he can hear what I say.

Example:

For theses items, you need to think about the stereotypical, “walking on eggshells” behaviors. Is the partner changing his or her behavior, his or her actions, to avoid emotional abuse?

Instead of talking through an example, it would be informative to think about how to best conduct an interview to get these details.

Start with open-ended prompts, and tailor your responses accordingly. Remember, you want to cover the five major areas of functioning. You could start with:

1. “Tell me about your work situation.” Tailor your follow-up questions: “Why did you stop working? What would make you go back to work?”

2. “Tell me about your level of education.” Depending on answer: “Why did you stop attending classes? What would make you go back?”

3. “Tell me about your spiritual or religious life.” Again, depending on answer: “Why did you stop practicing? What would make you go back?”

4. “Tell me about your self-care, like seeing a physician for physicals or a counselor. Depending on answer: “Why did you stop going? What would make you go back?”

5. “Tell me about your family and friends.” Depending on answer: “Why did you stop seeing them/talking to them? What would make you go back?”

With these prompts, you’re looking for a change in the behavior – hiding things from the partner, decreasing the frequency of doing something, or stopping the acts completely – in an effort to avoid the partner’s emotionally abusive reaction.