Abusive men are more likely to put their female partners at sexual risk along with the increased abusive behavior, says a new study.
The study conducted by the University of Washington looked at patterns of risky sexual behavior among heterosexual men aged 18 to 25, including some who self-reported using abusive and controlling behaviors in their relationships and others who didn't.
The research found that men who were physically and sexually abusive to women were more likely than non-abusive men to engage in behaviors that exposed them and their partners to sexually transmitted infections such as avoiding condoms and not being monogamous.
Author Erin Casey said that there is surprisingly little research about heterosexual men in the sexual health field and their research tends to focus on women and men who have sex with men.
Co-author Katherine Querna said that the researchers wanted to parse out individual sexual and abusive behaviors to provide a more nuanced picture of how specific types of abuse may influence sexual risks. She added that sexuality is a venue through which people who use abuse can control their partners, so isolating out those behaviors might help us to understand that.
Overall, Casey said that the findings highlight the need to consider a broad range of sexual behaviors in domestic violence and sexual risk prevention programs and to improve sexual risk screening and education in treatment programs for domestic violence perpetrators and victim services alike. The research is published in the Journal of Sex Research.