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Physical Tactics of Female Partners against Male Batterer Program Participants

  • Descriptive and predictive analyses were conducted using a multisite database of batterer program participants to assess the nature and extent of their female partner's violence, and implications for batterer program outcome (N = 563). Approximately 40% of the women reported ever using "severe" conflict tactics on the Conflict Tactics Scale (CTS; 17% used severe tactics in the arrest incident). Approximately 20% of the women reported using any type of physical tactic during a 15-month follow-up, and nearly all of these women were with men who physically attacked them during that period. These women were also highly likely to report acting out of fear or self-defense, and having sought a variety of services to deal with the men's violence. Their male partners, furthermore, showed evidence of antisocial tendencies and alcohol problems. Overall, the findings suggest women's "violent resistance" rather than "mutuality and symmetry." Batterer programs appear more appropriate in this regard than couples counseling.

    Written by E. Gondolf
    Published in Violence Against Women, 18(9)
    (2012)