The purpose of this study was to obtain theoretical description and to examine in an empirical investigation the personality of abused women to identify possible generalized personality profiles with the potential of explaining abused woman behaviour.
The empirical investigation was performed using Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory, MCMI-III, including 54 abused women, who at the time of investigation were temporary residents at 22 of 41 shelters in Denmark. In the sample 52 % of participants were of age 27-37 years with average number of stays 1.6, average duration of abusive relationship 4.1 year, average number of children 1.6 and 57 % held no occupation.
The data were analysis by an MCMI-III PC-program, Spearman two-tailed correlation and Bonferroni correction was applied. Avoidant personality, Depressive Personality, Dependent Personality and Self-Defeating Personality showed significant positive correlation. This cluster of personality profiles further showed significant positive correlation with clinical syndromes Anxiety, Dysthymia with Schizotypal pathology and with Major Depression.
Narcissistic Personality showed negative correlation with all other scales exhibiting significant correlation. Scores in a positive direction for Narcissistic scales showed associated scores in negative direction for Schizoid, Dependent and Dysthymia scales.
It is conjectured that the above cluster of personality profiles can be interpreted as a personality configuration with Dependent Personality as dominant profile or as Dependent Personality Disorder.