Attachment or Detachment?

Investigating different forms of Domestic Violence comes with lots of challenges and one of these is unconsciously creating emotional bond with the victims of abuse or the topic itself. Literally, a researcher neither chose his research topic out of external pressures nor financial interests. His uppermost reason ought to be based on personal interest although this does not necessarily have to be what he’d experienced in person. It is not surprising notably most researchers abandoning their research topics along the way due to disinterest. They’d lost the exordial ardour, imperceptibly embraced supineness on the subject matter and ultimately renounced all attempts to furtherance.

Since the objective focuses not merely on the aspect of physical abuses and its subsequent implications, researching Domestic Violence (DV) can be abstruse. Researching Rape is a vivid exemplification. The hurdles become apparent as the researcher finds himself, sometimes face-to-face with the victims of rape or their perpetrators. Coming into close contact with the former is often where lies the difficulties especially for female researchers. Here, there are two different worlds — the recipient (female investigator) and the contributor (female victim{s}) in the course of direct interviews, and observational study. How the female researcher conclusively and accurately measures the information she’d retrieved depends often on her ratiocination.

However it is not uncommon for the female investigator losing guard and letting go of that rigid ‘analytical’ mindset so that she can wholeheartedly be predisposed to showing empathy.

As a researcher, detaching myself emotionally from the interviewees deprive garnering accurate, relevant  information. When we detach ourselves from other people’s feeling, we lose humaneness and dive into the tunnel of narcissism. Antithetically, while drawing close is altruistic, it can also be too dangerous to the extent of overstepping the agreeable boundary.

Then, how attached or detached must researchers get with their interviewees?