Social support and intimate partner violence victimization among adults from six European countries

Dias, N., Costa, D., Soares, J., Hatzidimitriadou, E., Ioannidi-Kapolou, E., Lindert, J., Sundin, O., Toth, O., Barros, H. and Fraga, S. (2018) Social support and intimate partner violence victimization among adults from six European countries. Family Practice.

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Abstract

Background: Social support may buffer the negative effects of violence on physical and mental health. Family medicine providers play an essential role in identifying the available social support and intervening in intimate partner violence.

Objective: This study aimed at assessing the association between social support and the intimate partner victimization among adults from six European countries. Methods: Cross-sectional multi-centre study included individuals from Athens (Greece), Budapest (Hungary), London (United Kingdom), Östersund (Sweden), Porto (Portugal) and Stuttgart (Germany). Data collection was carried out between September 2010 and May 2011. The sample consisted of 3496 adults aged 18–64 years randomly selected from the general population in each city. The Revised Conflict Tactics Scales 2 was used to assess intimate partner violence victimization. Social support was assessed with the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support.

Results: Participants reporting physical assault victimization experienced lower social support (mean±standard deviation) than their counterparts, 66.1±13.96 vs. 71.7±12.90, p<0.001, for women; and 67.1±13.69 vs. 69.5±13.52, p=0.002 for men. Similar results were found regarding sexual coercion victimization, 69.1±14.03 vs. 71.3±12.97, p=0.005 for women and 68.0±13.29 vs. 69.3±13.62, p=0.021 for men. This study revealed lower levels of social support among participants reporting lifetime and past year victimization, independent of demographic, social and health-related factors.

Conclusion: Results showed a statistically significant association between low social support and intimate partner victimization. Although the specific mechanisms linking social support with experiences of violence need further investigation, it seems that both informal and formal networks may be associated with lower levels of abusive situations.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Adult; cross-sectional studies; Europe; intimate partner violence; social networking; social support
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Divisions: Faculty of Health and Wellbeing
Depositing User: Prof Eleni Hatzidimitriadou
Date Deposited: 19 Jun 2018 12:48
Last Modified: 23 Aug 2018 08:45
URI: https://create.canterbury.ac.uk/id/eprint/17299

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00