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Female Perpetration of Violence in Heterosexual Intimate Relationships: Adolescence Through Adulthood

NCJ Number
Trauma, Violence, & Abuse: A Review Journal Volume: 9 Issue: 4 Dated: October 2008 Pages: 227-249
Jessica R. Williams; Reem M. Ghandour; Joan E. Kub
Date Published
October 2008
23 pages
The purpose of this review is to describe the prevalence of female-perpetrated violence in heterosexual intimate relationships.
The information gained from this review indicates that female-perpetrated intimate partner violence (IPV) is a common occurrence among adolescents, college students, and adults. In all three populations, emotional violence appears to be the most prevalent, followed by physical and then sexual violence. However, given the wide range of prevalence rates within each study population, it is difficult to determine the developmental trajectory of female-perpetrated IPV from the studies reviewed. IPV is defined as physical, sexual, psychological, or emotional abuse, or threat of abuse, by a current or former spouse or partner. IPV is considered a critical public health concern. To date, most studies on IPV have focused on the victimization of women and girls rather than their male counterparts. In recent years, however, researchers have begun to extend this body of research to examine female perpetration of IPV. The review covered studies published between 1996 and 2006, and examines the prevalence of female-perpetrated intimate partner violence across three distinct populations: adolescents, college students, and adults. Table and references


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