Factors contributing to violence in dating relationships Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/5425kf38w

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  • Until recently the study of premarital abuse has received relatively little attention from researchers. Those studies which have been concerned with this phenomenon reveal that approximately 22% of their college samples reported involvement in abusive dating relationships, indicating that there is a need for further study in this area. The purpose of this study was to increase the limited knowledge base regarding those individuals who have experienced premarital violence. A sample of 506 college volunteers completed questionnaires which were designed to determine: (1) the frequency with which dating abuse occurred and (2) whether differences existed between the premarital abuse group and the nonabuse group with regard to certain descriptive variables. These variables included self concept, attitudes toward sex'roles, and exposure to family violence. In addition, the extent to which these variables were predictive of the perceived severity of the premarital abuse was examined. T tests were used to analyze the two groups in terms of sex role attitudes and self concept. It was found that individuals who reported involvement in premaritally abusive relationships had lower self concepts as compared to the nonabuse group. No significant differences were found between the groups concerning the maintenance of either liberal or traditional sex role attitudes. A chi-square analysis indicated that higher frequencies of both child abuse and marital violence were found in the abuse group than in the nonabuse group. Of these individuals who had been exposed to situations of child abuse, t tests revealed no significant differences in perceived pyschological effects between those respondents who been involved in premarital abuse and those who had not. However, of the respondents who reported observing marital abuse, those in the premarital abuse group indicated that they experienced more severe psychological effects of the violence than did the nonabuse group. Finally, a stepwise regression was performed to determine the extent to which the three variables of self concept, sex role attitude, and exposure to family violence, as well as a measure of physical severity, predicted the perceived psychological impact of premarital abuse. Results indicated that physical severity and self concept were significant predictors, jointly accounting for 18% of the variance.
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