Abuse of Spouse OR Partner
Alternate Names : Domestic Abuse
Abuse of spouse or partner occurs when one partner attempts to harm
the other in a relationship in which the two people are dating, married,
or living together. A recent study of girls in 9th through 12th grade
found that one out of five girls was physically and/or sexually abused
by a dating partner.
Abuse can take different forms, for example:
In this type of abuse, the abuser might make angry remarks in
private or public that cause the victim to feel worthless and ashamed.
This type of abuse can include hitting, slapping, punching, or beating.
Sexual abuse. This type of abuse can mean forcing
a partner to have sex against his or her will. It can also include making a
partner do sexual acts that he or she finds degrading. Forcing a woman
to risk pregnancy
or sexually transmitted disease
is another form of sexual abuse.
What are the causes and risks of the injury?
Spousal abuse happens to people of all religions, ethnic
origins, and income levels. It happens in both man-woman and same-sex
relationships. Women are the victims of domestic violence in 9 out of
10 cases, most often when they are between the ages of 19 and 29.
Recent studies show a man is more likely to abuse his
spouse or partner if he has been violent in the past. A partnership also
has a higher chance of becoming violent if one or more of the following
risk factors are present.
At least one partner has committed child abuse
At least one partner has not finished high school.
At least one partner has problems with drug abuse or addiction.
At least one partner is a blue-collar worker.
At least one partner is between the ages of 18 and 30.
At least one partner is unemployed.
Each partner has a different religion.
The couple lives together but are unmarried.
The couple has poor living conditions.
The male partner saw his father hit his mother.
When two of these factors are present in a relationship,
the risk of violence doubles. A couple with seven or more of these risk
factors is 40 times more likely to have an abusive relationship.
Experts know that teens who have been abused are at higher
risk for other health problems. However, we do not yet know whether the health
problems came before the abuse or if the abuse increased the risk for the
health problems. These problems include:
including binge drinking
risky sexual behaviors, including sex before age 15 and with many partners
attempts or thoughts
unhealthy weight management,
including eating disorders