Living on the Edges: Between Victims and Survivors, the Voices of Abused Adolescent Girls

Laura I. Sigad, Guy Beker, Rachel Lev-Wiesel, Zvi Eisikovits

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this article is to utilize an insider’s perspective to describe and analyze the experience of abuse and neglect of adolescent girls in Israel. A purposive sample of 20 adolescent, “at risk” girls was interviewed and chosen due to intensive experiences of abuse throughout their lives. Findings highlighted how these individuals negotiated and framed their experiences in order to enable them to cope with the abuse they had endured. Firstly, they manipulated space as well as time, using controlled, incremental processing (“dosing”) when narrating their experiences. For the adolescents in our study, communication was a central organizing axis of their abuse experiences and a tool for healing, encouraging a sense of self and facilitating relationships with others. In addition, the findings indicated that these adolescent girls possess a body of experiential knowledge that translates into coping skills extending beyond their abuse experiences.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)621-631
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Family Violence
Issue number5
StatePublished - 8 Jul 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015, Springer Science+Business Media New York.


  • Child abuse and neglect
  • Child maltreatment
  • Coping
  • Israel
  • Youth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Law


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