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Abstract

Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) is a prominent public health issue in the U.S., and evidence suggests that IPV disproportionately affects Black women. Additionally, Black women who are victimized may be reluctant to report and/or seek supportive services. Given these disparities, it is important to understand the context of IPV in the Black community. Although the Superwoman Schema (SWS) conceptual framework’s utility for explaining other health-related outcomes, such as mental health issues, among Black women is emerging, its use to understand the experiences of Black women and IPV in the Black community is limited. In this paper, we provide an overview of the SWS and IPV to find intersectionality between the two among Black women, including risk factors for victimization, barriers to the usage of mental health services, strength used as a coping mechanism, religious and spiritual concerns and interventions needed for Black survivors. We argue that there is great need for more research using the SWS to understand IPV among Black women, how SWS must be integrated into cultural competency training for counselors, and policies that keep Black women who report IPV safe from incarceration.

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