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Stalking Perpetrators and Psychological Maltreatment of Partners: Anger-Jealousy, Attachment Insecurity, Need for Control, and Break-Up Context

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Two studies of the correlates of self-reported courtship persistence, stalking-like behaviors following a relationship break-up, and psychological maltreatment of partners were conducted in samples of male (N = 46 and 93) and female (N = 123 and 110) college students. Approximately 40% (38.5% and 44.6%) engaged in at least one stalking behavior following a break-up. A total of 10.7% (study 1) and 7.6% (study 2) engaged in 6 or more stalking behaviors. Stalking was significantly related to psychological maltreatment of the partner (PMP) prior to the break-up. Being the recipient of the breakup was associated with feelings of anger, jealousy and obsessiveness and with higher levels of courtship persistence, and stalking. A replicated path model showed that anxious attachment and need for control were related to PMP and that need for control had a direct contribution to stalking. For anxious attachment, its connection to stalking was indirect, mediated by the degree of anger-jealousy over the break-up.
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Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: University of South Carolina

Publication date: January 1, 2000

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