"If it hurts you, then it is not a joke": adolescents' ideas about girls' and boys' use and experience of abusive behavior in dating relationships.
ABSTRACT This study examined adolescents' ideas about girls' and boys' use and experience of physical and psychological abuse in heterosexual dating relationships. Canadian high school students who were enrolled in Grades 9 and 11 took part in single-gender focus groups. Eight themes emerged from the analysis. The themes highlight the importance teenagers place on context for defining specific behaviors as abusive. They also underscore gender differences in the criteria adolescents use to make these judgments, in the forms of abusive behavior teenagers typically use in a dating relationship, and in the reasons for youths' declining use of physical abuse and increasing use of psychological abuse. These views have important implications for future research and for programs targeting adolescent dating violence.
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ABSTRACT: The present research examines the impact of type of aggression (physical/ psychological) and type of dyad (male aggressor/ female victim and female aggressor/ male victim) on perceptions of a conflict scenario and its combatants. Participants read scenarios depicting a conflict between a mar-ried heterosexual couple and reported their impressions of the aggressiveness of the encounter and of the aggressor and vic-tim. Physical aggression was evaluated more negatively (both in terms of the encounter and its combatants) than psycholog-ical aggression. Male to female violence was judged more harshly (both in terms of the aggressiveness of the encounter and impressions of the combatants) than female to male vio-lence. Study 2 extended Study 1, assessing the relationship of experience with physical and psychological aggression on per-ceptions. The results from Study 1 were replicated. Contrary to predictions, experience with physical and psychological ag-gression did not consistently relate to perceptions of these types of aggression. Keywords Gender . Experience with aggression . Intimate partner violence . Gender stereotypes Aggression is a behavior that is intended to cause harm to a target (Baron and Richardson 1994). In the context of close relationships, people can harm one another in a variety of ways. Blows, throwing things at the partner, and other attempts to physically harm the partner constitute physical aggression. When individuals attempt to control or demean others with harmful words and threats of actions, they are engaging in psychological aggression. The purpose of the investigations presented in this paper was to examine perceptions of physical and psychological aggression in the context of heterosexual intimate partner violence (IPV). Although the wounds of phys-ical aggression are often very apparent, those of psychological aggression may be hidden. Thus, individuals may not perceive the extent to which a victim of psychological aggression may suffer from the experience of being demeaned and humiliated by a loved one. The study of psychological aggression is relatively recent and a variety of definitions of that form of aggression have been proposed. Murphy and Cascardi (1999) argue that desire for domination and control is at the core of psychological aggres-sion and define it as " coercive or aversive acts intended to produce emotional harm or threat of harm " (p. 202). Psychological aggression may involve isolation, restricting be-haviors, humiliation, degradation, physical threats, property threats, financial control, and emotional withdrawal. Most research on aggression in intimate relationships has focused on physical aggression, perhaps because of the as-sumption that physical aggression causes greater injury and harm than psychological aggression (O'Leary 2001). Nevertheless, psychological aggression is relatively prevalent in intimate relationships (e.g., Capaldi and Crosby 1997; Jose and O'Leary 2009; Sears et al. 2006). Capaldi and Crosby (1997), for example, reported that 80% of males and females were observed to engage in at least one psychologically aggres-sive act during a problem-solving discussion with their dating partner. Using data collected from focus groups, Sears et al. (2006) reported that adolescents consider psychological abuse to be expected as part of a struggle for control in dating relationships. After reviewing the literature on prevalence of psychological aggression, Jose and O'Leary (2009) concluded G. S. Hammock (*) : D. S. RichardsonJournal of Family Violence 01/2015; 30(1):13. DOI:10.1007/s10896-014-9645-y · 1.17 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Teen dating violence is a common experience with severe consequences for the psychological and physical health of those affected. The purpose of this paper is to review current empirical studies and reviews about this issue and to evaluate the need of developing programs designed to prevent violence. Given the acceptance of violence in adolescent romantic relationships, preventive interventions should be directed at younger adolescents before negative interpersonal attitudes and behaviours become established, with the aim of reducing the continuity of aggression in future relationships. The majority of prevention programs have shown positive short-term effects in terms of knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs. Therefore, future research should assess longer-term follow-up to determine the strong effects of the prevention programs in behaviour changes.