This paper is based on the research interviews of 101 ISIS returnees, defectors, and ISIS prison cadres conducted by the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism (ICSVE). It examines the motivations that Western women, in particular, had for “seeking jihad,” i.e. joining ISIS and al-Qaeda related violent extremist groups. Namely, it delineates 10 motivations sets for joining such violent extremist groups as well as the roles women played in such violent extremist groups. Understanding the influence of the socio-political and cultural contexts in the geographic locations in which Western women were and continue to be recruited, and the gendered phenomena of ISIS recruitment, can inform thoughtful prevention efforts and result in improvement in rehabilitation and reintegration outcomes for those who return from violent extremist groups like ISIS.