Coming to terms with the everyday violence of our culture— Monica McGoldrick



In the culture in which I live, as with many cultures, violence is a part of so many people’s everyday lives. It is therefore an issue that finds its way into therapists’ offices and homes. In my therapeutic work, whenever we are talking about issues of violence, the question of forgiveness is also present.

The most common situation that plays itself out in my work concerns working with the survivors of men’s violence. When I work with a woman who has been abused by someone else, I first of all try to find ways in which she can feel whole within her own skin. I try to find ways in which she no longer has to define herself as the victim of another person’s actions. Sometimes this involves finding ways that the woman who has been victimised can forgive herself for what she has been recruited into believing was her own culpability.