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Arch Womens Ment Health. 2013 Feb;16(1):19-27. doi: 10.1007/s00737-012-0309-8. Epub 2012 Sep 30.

Risk factors for intimate partner violence during pregnancy and postpartum.

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Division of Prevention and Community Research and The Consultation Center, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06511, USA.


This longitudinal investigation examined potential risk factors for intimate partner violence (IPV) among women during pregnancy and 6 weeks postpartum. A sample of 180 pregnant women was collected in order to investigate (1) whether associations between partner alcohol misuse, partner jealousy, partner suspicion of infidelity, and stress were associated with IPV victimization; (2) the indirect effects of alcohol misuse on these relationships; and (3) factors related to changes in IPV victimization over time. At baseline, partner alcohol misuse was associated with each type of IPV victimization and the combination of partner alcohol misuse, partner jealousy, and partner suspicion of infidelity was most strongly associated with severe physical victimization. Partner alcohol misuse mediated the relationship between partner jealousy and psychological and severe physical victimization. At follow-up, partner jealousy and stress were related to women's psychological victimization and partner alcohol misuse was related to women's severe physical victimization. Findings suggest that partner alcohol misuse is a risk factor for women's IPV victimization during pregnancy and jealousy and that stress may increase risk for some types of IPV. Findings also suggest that intervention should target parents early in pregnancy in order to reduce the risk for future IPV.

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