Exposure to Spousal Violence in the Family, Attitudes and Dating Violence Perpetration Among High School Students in Port-au-Prince


Author(s): Gage A

Year: 2015

J Interpers Violence March 25, 2015. DOI: 10.1177/0886260515576971

This study examined the associations of exposure to spousal violence in the family and personal and peer attitudes with dating violence (DV) perpetration among high school students in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Participants were 342 high school students in Grades 10 to 12 who stated that they had ever been on a date.

Multiple linear regression methods were used to examine correlates of the scale of DV perpetration. Findings showed that personal acceptance of DV mediated the association between exposure to wife-perpetrated and husband-perpetrated spousal violence in the family and DV perpetration for girls. Boys who were exposed to husband-perpetrated spousal violence in the family had significantly higher levels of psychological DV perpetration than those who were not. Contrary to expectations, exposure to wife-perpetrated spousal violence in the family was negatively associated with psychological and physical/sexual DV perpetration by boys, after controlling for other factors.

Overall, perceived peer tolerance of DV was more strongly associated with DV perpetration than personal tolerance of DV, and was the only significant correlate of psychological DV perpetration for girls. Perceived peer attitudes also moderated the association between boys’ exposure to spousal violence in the family and DV perpetration. Implications for future research and policy are discussed.

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