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Canadian Journal of Public Health

, Volume 89, Issue 1, pp 43–47 | Cite as

Couple Violence and Psychological Distress

  • Elaine Grandin
  • Eugen Lupri
  • Merlin B. Brinkerhoff
Article

Abstract

Except for anecdotal data, empirical research on the psychological well-being of abused men is scarce. This paper compares the mental health of non-victims with victims of physical and psychological violence among 562 Calgary couples. Physical and psychological violence were assessed by two subscales of the Conflict Tactics Scales and psychological distress was assessed by abbreviated anxiety and depression subscales of the SCI-90, a frequency of symptom measure. Female and male victims of either psychological- only or physical violence reported significantly higher rates of distress than nonvictims. Females exhibited higher depression and anxiety scores than their male counterparts, regardless of whether they were victims or non-victims of either type of violence. Being both a perpetrator and victim of either type of violence is associated with significantly higher levels of psychological distress for both genders. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.

Résumé

Sauf pour les anecdotes, la recherche empirique sur le bien-être psychologique des hommes maltraités est rare. Cette communication compare la santé mentale de 562 couples hétérosexuels calgariens, mariés ou habitant ensemble, qui ont déclaré avoir subi une violence physique et psychologique dans leur relation. La violence physique et psychologique a été évaluée par deux souséchelles des Conflict Tactics Scales (E.-U.) et la détresse psychologique a été évaluée par les sous-échelles abrégées d’anxiété et de dépression du SCI-90, une mesure de fréquence des symptômes. Les femmes et les hommes victimes de violence psychologique exclusivement ou de violence physique ont déclaré des taux de détresse considérablement plus élevés que les non-victimes. Les femmes ont indiqué des niveaux de dépression et d’anxiété plus élevés que leurs homologues masculins, qu’elles aient ou non été victimes d’un type de violence. Être à la fois l’auteur et la victime d’un genre ou l’autre de violence est lié à des niveaux de détresse psychologique beaucoup plus élevés pour les deux sexes. Les incidences théoriques et pratiques de ces conclusions sont discutées.

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Copyright information

© The Canadian Public Health Association 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elaine Grandin
    • 1
  • Eugen Lupri
    • 1
  • Merlin B. Brinkerhoff
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of SociologyThe University of CalgaryCalgaryCanada

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