The general assumption has been that male batterers from clinical samples were mostly insecurely attached as compared to non-batterers. Recently, a large group was found (39.4 % of batterers in a clinical sample) whose main attachment style was secure. No previous studies have examined specifically the securely attached batterer. The aim of the present study was to test whether antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) and narcissistic personality disorder (NPD), but not borderline personality disorder (BPD), traits may be related to battering among securely attached individuals. Twenty-seven securely attached batterers, 45 insecurely attached batterers, 40 securely attached controls, and 22 insecurely attached controls who lived in the Netherlands, filled in self-report measures of personality disorder traits (i.e., antisocial, narcissism, borderline) and attachment (i.e., avoidant and anxious). Results showed that ASPD traits explained 19 % of the variance of battering in securely attached individuals. NPD and BPD traits are related to battering among securely attached individuals when NPD and BPD traits were entered alone in the equation.
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Nicole Buck, Ph.D., is research coordinator at Forensic Psychiatric Clinic De Kijvelanden (the Netherlands). Her current research includes domestic violence, cognitive processing in relation to aggression, and sexual offending.
Ellie Leenaars, Ph.D., works as a clinical psychologist at the Outpatient and Day Treatment Clinic Het Dok in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, where she treats mainly sex offenders and perpetrators of domestic violence. She develops modules aimed at prevention of aggressive behavior for aggressive adults and perpetrators of domestic violence.
Paul Emmelkamp, Ph.D., is professor of clinical psychology at the University of Amsterdam. He has written many books on research into a variety of clinical subjects, including Evidence-Based Treatment of Alcohol and Drug Abuse (with E. Vedel; Routledge, 2006), which has been translated in Dutch and Japanese, and Personality Disorders (with J. Kamphuis; Taylor & Francis, 2007), which has been translated in Swedish and Italian. He is the Editor of the Wiley Handbook of Anxiety Disorders (two volumes, Wiley-Blackwell, 2014) and coeditor-in-chief of Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy. In 2006, he was awarded a distinguished professorship (“academy professor”) by the Royal Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Hjalmar Marle, Ph.D., is professor of forensic psychiatry at Erasmus University Medical Center and at the School of Law at Erasmus University, Rotterdam, the Netherlands. His current research includes psychiatric determinants of violence and criminal careers, especially psychopathy.
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Buck, N.M.L., Leenaars, P.E.M., Emmelkamp, P.M.G. et al. Personality Traits are Related to Intimate Partner Violence Among Securely Attached Individuals. J Fam Viol 29, 235–246 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10896-014-9584-7
- Marital violence
- Husband violence
- Antisocial personality
- Narcissistic personality
- Borderline personality