Familial variables and domestic violence

J Ark Med Soc. 1995 Oct;92(5):222-4.


We investigated variables predictive of domestic violence from 64 intake forms at a battered women's shelter. The batterer, usually the financial provider, used drugs/alcohol. Clients' physical abuse as children was correlated with whether their siblings were abused, and to emotional and sexual abuse. Clients' parents being alcoholic was correlated with spouse abuse between clients' parents and with clients' sexual abuse as a child. Findings support theories viewing domestic violence as a familial pattern. Domestic violence is, unfortunately, a common place occurrence. Statistics compiled by the Arkansas Coalition Against Violence to Women and Children indicate that domestic violence is the major cause of injuries to women, exceeding automobile accidents, muggings, and rapes combined. National statistics (Healthy People 2000, 1990) reveal that "between 2 and 4 million women are physically battered each year by partners" (p. 61), with some 21 to 30% of women having been beaten by a partner at least once (Healthy People 2000, 1990). Moreover, domestic violence occurs at least once in up to half of all marriages. In fact, domestic violence is the most frequently experienced type of violent crime (Northeast Arkansas Council..., 1994). This violence also extends to children. For example, Healthy People 2000 indicated that "In 1986 an estimated 1.6 million children nationwide experienced some form of abuse or neglect" (p. 61), with physical abuse being the most common type of abuse. From battered women seeking assistance, data have been gathered on both victims and abusers. Although battered women can come from different backgrounds, commonalities exist.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Arkansas
  • Demography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Spouse Abuse / statistics & numerical data*