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Understanding the Use of Violence Among Men Who Sustain Intimate Terrorism

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Researchers in the field of intimate partner violence (IPV) are paying increasing levels of attention to the notion that members of aggressive and violent relationships cannot always be dichotomized as innocent victims versus blameworthy perpetrators; nonetheless, no research has documented characteristics of IPV victims that may predict their use of abusive and aggressive behaviors in response to their partners' IPV. This study fills this gap and is unique because it uses a sample of 302 men who sustained intimate terrorism from their female partners and sought help. Results showed that victims who used physical IPV, in comparison with victims who did not, were younger and were more likely to abuse alcohol. In addition, in comparison with victims who used minor physical IPV, victims who used severe physical IPV were more likely to use—and use more frequently—other forms of IPV, and they were more likely to be substance abusers. Results are discussed in terms of possible theoretical implications, directions for future research, and practice implications.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2011

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