The purpose of this article is to describe the rationale and methods of couple-based interventions designed to treat and prevent intimate partner violence. Cognitive, affective, and behavioral individual and couple risk factors for violence are reviewed, as are therapeutic concerns regarding the use of conjoint treatment. Current conjoint treatments that are intended to reduce the incidence of abusive behavior among couples in which one or both partners have engaged in forms of psychological and/or mild to moderate physical aggression, do not engage in battering or severe violence, and desire to improve their relationships and stay together are described. We focus on our Couples Abuse Prevention Program (CAPP) that compares the efficacy of cognitive-behavioral couple therapy procedures and treatment as usual at a university-based couple and family therapy clinic. Outcomes from the CAPP project and evaluations of the other programs demonstrate the potential of judiciously applied conjoint interventions for aggressive behavior in couple relationships.
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Over 30 years of research has established that both men and women are capable of sustaining intimate partner violence (IPV) by their opposite-sex partners, yet little research has examined men’s experiences in such relationships. Some experts in the field have forwarded assumptions about men who sustain IPV — for example, that the abuse they experience is trivial or humorous and of no consequence and that, if their abuse was severe enough, they have the financial and psychological resources to easily leave the relationship — but these assumptions have little data to support them. The present study is an in-depth, descriptive examination of 302 men who sustained severe IPV from their women partners within the previous year and sought help. We present information on their demographics, overall mental health, and the types and frequency of various forms of physical and psychological IPV they sustained. We also provide both quantitative and qualitative information about their last physical argument and their reasons for staying in the relationship. It is concluded that, contrary to many assumptions about these men, the IPV they sustain is quite severe and both mentally and physically damaging; their most frequent response to their partner’s IPV is to get away from her; and they are often blocked in their efforts to leave, sometimes physically, but more often because of strong psychological and emotional ties to their partners and especially their children. These results are discussed in terms of their implications for policy and practice.
- Go to article: Interventions for Perpetrators of Intimate Partner Violence: A Review of Efficacy Research and Recent Trends
Interventions for Perpetrators of Intimate Partner Violence: A Review of Efficacy Research and Recent Trends
The efficacy of psychosocial interventions for perpetrators of intimate partner violence (IPV) has been increasingly challenged in recent years, largely in response to reviews of research showing limited program effects. This article addresses the state of the art in research on IPV perpetrator interventions. After considering previous quantitative reviews of research in this area, new trends and innovations are addressed, including culturally focused interventions, case management and comprehensive services, supportive efforts to enhance program attendance, and interventions focused on motivation to change. Recent research has failed to provide clear evidence that race-specific groups or culturally focused content enhances the efficacy of standard IPV interventions. Similarly, research exploring case management for IPV perpetrators revealed important problems in implementation of the intervention and no clear evidence of improved outcomes. However, some evidence indicates that the integration of substance use interventions may enhance violence reduction. Supportive interventions designed to enhance program attendance and motivation to change have yielded consistently encouraging results, including significant effects on program attendance, compliance with IPV intervention tasks, and increased personal change and help-seeking efforts. These interventions have shown favorable initial effects in reducing abusive behavior relative to treatment-as-usual controls, and they are highlighted as a potentially fruitful avenue for continued research.
- Go to article: Erring on the Side of Hidden Harm: The Granting of Domestic Violence Restraining Orders
In deciding whether to enter a domestic violence restraining order, many judges think about their careers in addition to the merits of the cases before them. While the damage to parent–child relationships and to children’s mental health caused by the overzealous entering of restraining orders is seldom if ever reported by the media, the harm caused by overtly violent acts following the failure to enter restraining orders most certainly is. In regards to restraining orders, the phrase “erring on the side of caution” is often invoked. It is more accurate, however, to characterize the judge’s behavior as “erring on the side of hidden harm.” Rather than judges, juries—one time judicial actors—should decide when domestic violence restraining orders are warranted.
- Go to article: The Effects of Intimate Partner Violence on Relationship Satisfaction Over Time for Young At-Risk Couples: The Moderating Role of Observed Negative and Positive Affect
The Effects of Intimate Partner Violence on Relationship Satisfaction Over Time for Young At-Risk Couples: The Moderating Role of Observed Negative and Positive Affect
In the current study, the moderating effects of observed negative and positive affects on the association between intimate partner violence (IPV, physical aggression) and relationship satisfaction were examined over a 5-year period. Multiwave data were obtained from a sample of young adult men at risk for delinquency and their women partners (n = 121 couples; ages 21–26 years). The trajectory of each partner’s relationship satisfaction and the effects of dyadic IPV and affect were tested using HLM analyses and a two-level (within-couple and between-couple) dyadic growth model. Average levels of dyadic positive affect were associated with relationship satisfaction for both men and women. For men, increases in couples’ positive affect over time were linked to increases in relationship satisfaction, and increases in couples’ externalizing negative affect were linked to decreases in satisfaction. For women, higher levels of couples’ IPV predicted lower levels of satisfaction. Couples’ internalizing negative affect amplified the effects of IPV on satisfaction over time. Increases in IPV were associated with declines in satisfaction for couples with high levels of internalizing negative affect. Conversely, average levels of externalizing negative affect did not amplify the association between IPV and relationship satisfaction. In fact, the adverse influence of IPV on relationship satisfaction was greater for couples who displayed low levels of externalizing negative affect. Because of the inverse association between externalizing negative affect and relationship satisfaction, these findings were interpreted to suggest that the salience of IPV was greater in couples whose relationship satisfaction was not already impaired by high levels of negative affect.
The study of men’s violence against their intimate partners is segregated from the study of other forms of violence. Comparing intimate partner violence (IPV) to other violence, however, allows one to examine whether the motivation and the legal response are similar. I examine whether men’s assaults on partners are particularly likely to have a control motive, whether women’s assaults on partners are particularly likely to be motivated by self-defense, and whether intimate partner violence is less likely to be reported to the police and legally sanctioned. The evidence casts doubt on the feminist approach, which has dominated the study of IPV. I suggest that a theory of instrumental violence provides a better understanding of IPV. Such an approach recognizes a variety of motives and emphasizes the role of conflict in intimate relationships, sex differences in strength and violence, and the importance of chivalry. Finally, I suggest that social scientists who study IPV should be more careful in their descriptive terminology.
The gender paradigm is the view that most domestic violence (DV) is maleperpetrated against females (and children) in order to maintain patriarchy. Based on functionalist sociology, it has been the prominent DV perspective in North America and Western Europe, framing criminal justice policy to DV, court understanding of DV, court disposition of DV perpetrators to psychoeducational groups, and custody decisions. Research evidence contradicts every major tenet of this belief system: female DV is more frequent than male DV, even against nonviolent partners, there is no overall relationship of control to DV, and abuse perpetrators who use intimate partner violence (IPV) for coercive instrumental reasons are both male and female. Research supporting the gender paradigm is typically based on self-selected samples (victims from women’s shelters and men from court-mandated groups) and then inappropriately generalized to community populations. The gender paradigm is a closed system, unresponsive to major disconfirming data sets, and takes an antiscience stance consistent with a cult. In this article, I compare the responses of this gender cult to other cults and contrast it with a scientific response to contradictory data.
Beginning with grass root movements in the early 1970s, batterer intervention programs (BIP) have evolved into the most prominent and visible form of intervention for individuals who commit acts of violence against their intimate partner. Evidence indicates, however, that these programs do not demonstrate high levels of effectiveness at stopping abuse/violence. To this end, this conceptual article presents an analytic discussion that first outlines traditional BIP approaches highlighting the literature finding ineffectiveness. Next, six ideas with the potential to change the field are presented followed by a brief description of how integrating strengths into work with batterers can improve intervention.
- Go to article: Guiding as Practice: Motivational Interviewing and Trauma-Informed Work With Survivors of Intimate Partner Violence Motivational Interviewing and Intimate Partner Violence Workgroup
Guiding as Practice: Motivational Interviewing and Trauma-Informed Work With Survivors of Intimate Partner Violence Motivational Interviewing and Intimate Partner Violence Workgroup
Over the last five years, a new paradigm has emerged in social services. Numerous social service providers are now being asked to provide treatment within a framework of trauma-informed care. Trauma-informed services recognize the pervasive impact of current and previous violence on the everyday lives of many clients. Such services prioritize the establishment of a safe, trusting relationship where trauma can be disclosed. Trauma-informed services also account for the potential effects of clients’ experiences of violence and trauma on their relationship to treatment and to treatment providers. This article describes trauma-informed services and the potential that Motivational Interviewing (MI), an evidence-based, client-centered, and guiding communication style, holds for utilization within trauma-informed work. A case vignette is provided which demonstrates primary MI skills that can be used to create a climate of safety and trust, and effectively elicit and strengthen clients’ motivation for change. A discussion of the case and ethical aspects associated with MI in trauma-informed work is also provided. In addition, suggestions are made as to the potential MI holds for further use with traumatized clients.
The literature indicates that witnessing domestic violence is harmful to children, that there is a high overlap between domestic violence and child abuse, and that safety is an important issue for separating women because separation from abusive partners is a particularly dangerous time for victims of domestic violence. Further, child custody is often a contentious issue in domestic violence cases. Child custody evaluations are typically used to assist courts in deciding custody when custody is disputed and when the best interests of the child are unclear. The concept of “best interests of the child” does not specify evaluation techniques or approaches, however, and while custody evaluation standards generally address the best interests of the child, they offer little guidance in high-risk situations such as parental domestic violence. In addition, there has been limited research focused on understanding the custody evaluation process or the degree to which practitioners differ in their procedures and reporting for cases with and without parental domestic violence. This study is one of the first to examine characteristics of disputed custody cases and their custody evaluation reports for differences between domestic violence and non-domestic violence cases. This study selected a 60% random sample of cases with custody evaluations in Fiscal Year 1998 and 1999 (n = 82 cases). Out of the 82 cases, 56% (n = 46) met criteria for classification into the domestic violence group and 44% (n = 36) did not. In general, results indicated that although there were some important differences in court records between cases with and without domestic violence, there were only minor differences between custody evaluation reported process and recommendations for the two groups. Implications for research and practice are discussed.Source: