battered woman syndrome

noun | battered wo·man syndrome
  1. : the psychological symptoms suffered by a woman repeatedly abused by a mate (as a husband) — called also battered woman's syndrome

    Note: Battered woman syndrome is used as a defense to violent criminal charges (as homicide). Evidence of repeated abuse is used to show that the defendant acted in self-defense even though the threat or danger was not imminent. Battered woman syndrome is also used as a mitigating factor in sentencing.