Cyber psychological abuse and social media surveillance of ex-partners are relatively common virtual forms of behavior linked with intimate partner violence (Pineda, Galán, Martínez-Martínez, Campagne, & Piqueras, 2021) as well as on-going and dangerous intimate partner stalking (Logan & Langhinrichsen-Rohling, 2021). While both forms of behavior are concerning, especially after the dissolution of a romantic relationship, transdiagnostic shared and unique predictors of each are relatively unknown. In the current study, we examined the associations between intolerance of uncertainty and emotion dysregulation and the perpetration of post-breakup cyber psychological abuse and social media surveillance. We asked college students (n = 284) to report on their intolerance of uncertainty, emotion dysregulation difficulties (particularly difficulties engaging in goal directed behavior, impulse control difficulties, and lack of emotional clarity), and behaviors towards their ex-partner associated with the perpetration of cyber psychological abuse and social media surveillance. Participants reported engaging in an average of 2.4 (SD = 2.17) post-breakup behaviors associated with cyber psychological abuse and 4.47 (SD = 3.60) different acts of social media surveillance. Mediation models supported the premise that intolerance of uncertainty is predictive of emotion dysregulation, which, in turn, mediated the association between intolerance of uncertainty and both cyber psychological abuse and social media surveillance. Subscale analyses specifically highlighted difficulties engaging in goal-directed behavior as an important mediator of both behaviors. Taken together, this suggests that intolerance of uncertainty and poor emotion regulation after a relationship breakup are potential drivers of unhealthy ex-partner focused behaviors on social media and other electronic mediums of communication.
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- Go to article: Rates of Bidirectional Versus Unidirectional Intimate Partner Violence Across Samples, Sexual Orientations, and Race/Ethnicities: A Comprehensive Review
Rates of Bidirectional Versus Unidirectional Intimate Partner Violence Across Samples, Sexual Orientations, and Race/Ethnicities: A Comprehensive Review
One hotly debated topic within the field of intimate partner violence (IPV) is the degree to which IPV can be understood as primarily a unidirectional versus bidirectional phenomena; this topic forms a key component of the gender symmetry versus asymmetry of domestic violence debate. Resolution of this controversy has important prevention and intervention implications. In the current study, a comprehensive review of the literature was conducted, and 48 studies that reported rates of bidirectional versus unidirectional physical violence (male-to-female and female-to-male) were uncovered using a variety of search engines and key terms; one relevant meta-analysis and one seminal book chapter were also identified. Included empirical studies were published in 1990 or later, appeared in peer-reviewed journals, and contained empirical data directly related to bidirectionality of violence. Studies that only reported correlations between self-reported perpetration and victimization were excluded from these analyses. Qualifying studies were then categorized by the nature of the sample they assessed (i.e., large population samples; smaller community; purposive or convenience samples; clinical or treatment-seeking samples; legal/criminal justice-related samples; and samples assessing the relationships of gay, lesbian, and/or bisexual individuals). Rates of bidirectional versus unidirectional violence (male-toward-female vs. female-toward-male) were summarized directly as reported or were derived on the basis of data contained within the article.
All obtained studies (48 empirical, 1 meta-analysis, 1 book chapter) were then entered into an online summary table for public review; however, additional results were specifically calculated for the current article. These results indicate that bidirectional violence was common across all types of samples (population-based to criminal justice). This suggests that the role of women in violent relationships is important to consider, even if all aspects of women’s perpetration of IPV are not symmetrical to men’s perpetration of IPV. A second finding to emerge was that the ratio of unidirectional female-to-male compared to male-to-female IPV differed significantly among samples with higher rates of female-perpetrated unidirectional violence found in four of the five sample types considered. Higher ratios of male-to-female unidirectional violence were found only in criminal justice/legal studies that relied on police reports of IPV perpetration and/or in samples drawn from the U.S. military. Competing explanations for the differing ratios were offered in the current discussion. These need to be tested empirically in order to fully understand the expression of IPV across samples and settings. Differences in the directionality of the expression of IPV were not found in samples of gay, lesbian, or bisexual individuals; however, rates of bidirectional violence appear to vary by race/ethnicity with higher rates of bidirectional violence among Black couples. Overall, it is suggested that if one resolution of the gender symmetry/asymmetry debate is to argue that there are subtypes of male and female domestic violence perpetrators (Johnson, 2005; Johnson, 2006), or that there are different patterns of violence among different types of relationships characterized by IPV (Stets & Straus, 1989), researchers and clinicians will need to work together to determine how to reliably and meaningfully make these determinations in ways that will facilitate our ability to effectively prevent and treat all types of IPV.
- Go to article: Involvement in Intimate Partner Psychological Abuse and Suicide Proneness in College Women: Alcohol Related Problems as a Potential Mediator
Involvement in Intimate Partner Psychological Abuse and Suicide Proneness in College Women: Alcohol Related Problems as a Potential Mediator
This study examined the relations among involvement in intimate partner psychological abuse, alcohol-related problems, and suicide proneness as measured by the Life Attitudes Schedule—Short Form (LAS-SF) in college women (N = 709). Results revealed that, as expected, being involved in a psychologically abusive relationship was significantly and positively correlated with alcohol-related problems and alcohol-related problems were significantly and positively correlated with suicide proneness. Additionally, the intimate partner psychological abuse involvement-suicide proneness link was significantly mediated by alcohol-related problems. Implications are offered for the improved identification and treatment of young women at risk for suicidal and health-diminishing behaviors.
- Go to article: Do Anger and Jealousy Mediate the Relationship Between Adult Attachment Styles and Intimate Violence Perpetration?
Do Anger and Jealousy Mediate the Relationship Between Adult Attachment Styles and Intimate Violence Perpetration?
Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine whether anger and jealousy mediate the relationship between adult attachment styles (i.e., dismissive, fearful, preoccupied, secure) and physical intimate partner violence (IPV) perpetration for both men and women. Method: Undergraduate students (n = 431) were sampled from a large Midwestern U.S. university. Results: Mediational analyses revealed that anger mediated the associations between each of the four attachment styles and violence perpetration for women. However, neither anger nor jealousy mediated the association between attachment and violence perpetration for men. Conclusions: Young women’s IPV perpetration appears more closely related to their emotional responses, in particular anger, but violence perpetration in young men does not necessarily seem to follow this pattern. These findings suggest specific strategies which may be useful for preventive efforts of violence perpetration in young adult women, such as anger-related emotion regulation skills training.
- Go to article: Attachment, Relationship Beliefs, and Partner-Specific Assertiveness and Psychological Aggression Among College Students
Attachment, Relationship Beliefs, and Partner-Specific Assertiveness and Psychological Aggression Among College Students
Adult attachment is related to several important relationship variables, including physical aggression (e.g., Bookwala & Zdaniuk, 1998; Henderson, Bartholomew, Trinke, & Kwong, 2005) and relationship beliefs (Stackert & Bursik, 2003). In this study, we extended previous findings by examining the specific associations between anxious and avoidant attachment, dysfunctional relationship beliefs, and partner-specific assertiveness and psychological aggressiveness. Results indicated that assertiveness was associated with sex (males reported lower assertiveness) and attachment avoidance (participants high in avoidance reported less assertiveness toward partner). Psychological aggressiveness was related to sex (males reported lower psychological aggressiveness) and attachment (anxious and avoidant attachment were related to more psychological aggressiveness). As predicted, the relation of anxious attachment to psychological aggression was mediated by dysfunctional beliefs. Students with anxious attachment were more likely to believe that disagreements were destructive, which was related to higher rates of perpetrating psychological aggression.
- Go to article: More Than a Literature Review: The Partner Abuse State of Knowledge Articles and Online Database
- Go to article: Are Bi-Directionally Violent Couples Mutually Victimized? A Gender-Sensitive Comparison
Mutual victimization in marriage was studied in a sample of clinic couples (N = 57) where both spouses reported partner aggression on an adapted version of the Conflict Tactics Scale (Straus, 1979). As predicted, wives sustained more injuries and were more negatively affected by their partner’s physical aggression than did husbands. Multiple dimensions of aggression were used to identify subgroups of mutually victimized couples (e.g., frequency, severity of aggressive act[s], psychological impact, and severity of injury). The largest subgroup consisted of spouses who reported low levels of victimization on all dimensions. Subgroup 2 included couples in which wives reported higher overall levels of victimization than did their husbands. A third small subgroup was also identified where husbands reported higher levels of victimization than did their wives. Contrary to prediction, both highly victimized wives and highly victimized husbands in the asymmetrical victimization subgroups reported greater levels of relationship and individual distress than did spouses in the mutual/low victimization and nonaggression control groups. However, the marriages of the two highly victimized subgroups did differ in important ways. The findings were interpreted to suggest an integration of feminist and dyadic theories of marital aggression.
- Go to article: Meta-Research on Violence and Victims: The Impact of Data Collection Methods on Findings and Participants
- Go to article: Negative Family-of-Origin Experiences: Are They Associated With Perpetrating Unwanted Pursuit Behaviors?
Negative Family-of-Origin Experiences: Are They Associated With Perpetrating Unwanted Pursuit Behaviors?
Parental divorce, history of parental relationship separation, perceptions of interparental conflict, and witnessing parental violence were retrospectively assessed in a sample of 213 college students from several regions in the United States, all of whom had suffered an unwanted break-up of an important romantic relationship. This study investigated whether these family-of-origin experiences were associated with perpetrating unwanted pursuit behaviors after the relationship break-up. Results indicated that male participants who had experienced either parental divorce or separation perpetrated more severe unwanted pursuit behavior than males who had not experienced parental divorce or separation or females from either divorced, separated, or intact families. For females, severe unwanted pursuit behavior perpetration was correlated with threatening and intense parental arguments. These findings suggest that a variety of types of negative parental relationship behavior may be risk factors for perpetrating severe unwanted pursuit behaviors. The gender-specificity and implications of these findings are discussed.
- Go to article: Sensitive Research With Adolescents: Just How Upsetting Are Self-Report Surveys Anyway?
Distress related to answering personal survey questions about drug use, suicidal behavior, and physical and sexual abuse were examined in multiple convenience samples of adolescents. Samples varied in consent procedures utilized (active vs. passive parental consent), data collection setting (school vs. juvenile justice), developmental level (middle school vs. high school). Participation rates differed across consent procedures (e.g., 93% with passive vs. 62% with active parental consent). Results indicated that small percentages of adolescents in every sample reported frequently feeling upset while completing the survey (range 2.5% to 7.6%). Age, race, gender, and data collection strategy did not emerge as significant predictors of feeling upset. Instead, as hypothesized, adolescents reporting a history of suicidal ideation or attempt, illicit drug use, or experiences of physical or sexual victimization endorsed more frequent feelings of upset while completing the survey than peers without these experiences. Taken together, however, these sensitive event experiences explained only 6.6% of the variance in adolescents’ upset ratings. The scientific and ethical implications of these findings are discussed with regard to adolescent participation in survey research about sensitive topics.
- Go to article: An Examination of Sheltered Battered Women’s Perpetration of Stalking and Other Unwanted Pursuit Behaviors
An Examination of Sheltered Battered Women’s Perpetration of Stalking and Other Unwanted Pursuit Behaviors
In the current study, sheltered battered women (n = 105) self-reported whether they had perpetrated stalking or other unwanted pursuit behaviors (e.g., harassment, threat) during relationship separations from their abuser. Results indicated that sheltered battered women who admitted perpetrating stalking behavior (about 25% of the sample) had more self-blame, depression, and a greater tendency to leave the shelter within the first week (45%) than did battered women who did not report perpetrating stalking behaviors. The majority of battered women who reported perpetrating stalking behavior also reported being victimized by stalking behaviors (bidirectional stalking). Although these women reported similarly high levels of fear toward their abuser as did unidirectionally stalked women, bidirectionally stalking women were less likely to perceive that their abuser was using his violence to obtain control over them and were more depressed and self-blaming. Directions for future research, recommendations for shelter staff, and the potential treatment implications of these findings are discussed.
- Go to article: Motivations for Men and Women’s Intimate Partner Violence Perpetration: A Comprehensive Review
The main purpose of this review article was to collect and summarize all available papers that reported empirical data related to men’s and women’s motivations for IPV. To facilitate direct gender comparisons, the motives reported in each obtained study were coded by the current authors into seven broad categories: (a) power/control, (b) self-defense, (c) expression of negative emotion (i.e., anger), (d) communication difficulties, (e) retaliation, (f) jealousy, and (g) other. Across the 75 samples (located in 74 articles) that were reviewed and coded for this study, 24 contained samples of only women (32%), 6 samples consisted of only men (8%), and 46 samples used both women and men (62%). Power/control and self-defense were commonly measured motivations (76% and 61%, respectively). However, using violence as an expression of negative emotion (63%), communication difficulties (48%), retaliation (60%), or because of jealousy (49%) were also commonly assessed motives. In 62% of the samples, at least one other type of motive was also measured. Only 18 of the located study samples (24%) included data that allowed for a direct gender comparison of men’s and women’s reported motivations. Many of these studies did not subject their data to statistical analyses. Among those that did, very few gender-specific motives for perpetration emerged. These results should be viewed with caution, however, because many methodological and measurement challenges exist in this field. There was also considerable heterogeneity across papers making direct gender comparisons problematic.
- Go to article: Breaking Up is Hard To Do: Unwanted Pursuit Behaviors Following the Dissolution of a Romantic Relationship
Breaking Up is Hard To Do: Unwanted Pursuit Behaviors Following the Dissolution of a Romantic Relationship
This study investigated the prevalence and predictors of unwanted pursuit behaviors among college students. Participants (n = 282) had experienced the termination of a meaningful romantic relationship. Two questionnaires were administered. One assessed unwanted pursuit behaviors that were perpetrated by individuals who had not initiated the relationship breakup (breakup sufferers; n = 120); the other assessed individuals who had initiated the relationship breakup (relationship dissolvers; n = 162). Results indicated that most breakup sufferers had engaged in at least one act of unwanted pursuit (i.e., unwanted phone calls, unwanted in-person conversations) after the breakup. Breakup sufferers were more likely than relationship dissolvers to perceive a positive impact from their unwanted pursuit behavior. Partner-specific attachment experiences and love styles emerged as significant predictors of unwanted pursuit behavior perpetration, according to both victims and perpetrators of unwanted pursuit. However, only victims of unwanted pursuit revealed an association between levels of relationship violence and unwanted pursuit behavior perpetration. Victims also reported that their unwanted pursuit was related to a lack of friendship between themselves and their ex-partners. In contrast, there was a positive association between feelings of friendship and unwanted pursuit for perpetrators. The implications of these findings and their application to the stalking literature are discussed.
- Go to article: Sexual and Nonsexual Dating Violence Perpetration: Testing an Integrated Perpetrator Typology
The present study tested the validity of an integrated sexual and nonsexual violence perpetrator typology outlined by Monson and Langhinrichsen-Rohling (1998) in a sample of 670 dating individuals. Two-hundred-and-sixty-five of the participants (87 men, 178 women) reported some act of sexual and/or physical dating violence perpetration in their lifetime. The data supported at least three perpetrator types, namely, the Relationship-only, Generally Violent/Antisocial, and Histrionic/Preoccupied types. Overall, these findings indicate that different factors may cause or maintain the intimate violence perpetrated within this heterogeneous population. There were important gender differences in perpetrator type membership, highlighting the differences in men’s and women’s use of violence. The implications of these findings are discussed with regard to the development of typologies, their application to men and women perpetrators, as well as their utility for the assessment and treatment of perpetrators.