A new study has revealed that having a partner who exhibits controlling behaviours appears to be associated with increased physical and sexual relationship violence.
However, young women experiencing these behaviours are more hesitant to answer questions about relationship violence.
"High rates of relationship violence have been reported among adolescents and young adults," writes Marina Catallozzi, of the Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York, and colleagues as background information in the article. To examine the correlation between controlling behaviors and relationship violence, the authors conducted an anonymous audio computer-assisted self-interview with female patients in a reproductive health center. A total of 603 women between the ages of 15 and 24 years participated.
In the population examined, 411 women (68 percent) reported experiencing one or more episodes of controlling behavior; 38.1 percent reported experiencing only controlling behavior; 11.4 percent and 10 percent reported receiving controlling behaviors plus physical or sexual victimization respectively; and 8.6 percent reported all forms of relationship violence.
The authors found that being a younger adolescent (between the ages of 15 and 18), Hispanic ethnicity, childhood exposure to domestic violence, having reported one or more pregnancies, recent physical or sexual victimization, and being uncomfortable asking for condom use were all significantly associated with increased episodes of controlling behaviors by a partner.
The report has been published in the April issue of Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.