Factors Related to Sexual Abuse and Forced Sex in a Sample of Women Experiencing Police-involved Intimate Partner Violence

Jill Messing, Jonel Thaller, Meredith Bagwell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Intimate partner sexual violence (IPSV) is a significant social problem, particularly among women who are concurrently experiencing physical violence in their intimate relationships. This research examined the prevalence and factors associated with IPSV among a sample of women recruited at the scene of police-involved intimate partner violence incidents (N = 432). Within this sample, 43.98 percent of participants reported experiencing IPSV; this includes 17.36 percent who reported sexual abuse and 26.62 percent who reported forced sex. Multinomial logistic regression was used to examine the factors related to sexual abuse and forced sex, controlling for victim and relationship characteristics. Compared with women not reporting IPSV, women who were sexually abused or forced into sexual intercourse were significantly more likely to experience strangulation, feelings of shame, and posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms. Women whose partners had forced sex were more likely to report that they had a child in common with their abusive partner; and that their partner was sexually jealous, had threatened to kill them, had stalked or harassed them, or caused them to have a miscarriage due to abuse. These findings can be used to better inform social work practitioners about the prevalence and nature of IPSV and the associated risk factors, and can assist in routine screening and intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)181-191
Number of pages11
JournalHealth and Social Work
Volume39
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2014

Keywords

  • domestic violence
  • forced sex
  • intimate partner violence
  • sexual abuse
  • sexual assault

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)

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