Childhood sexual abuse associated with dating partner violence and suicidal ideation in a representative household sample in Hong Kong

Ko Ling Chan, Elsie Yan, Douglas A Brownridge, Agnes Tiwari, Daniel Y T Fong
Journal of Interpersonal Violence 2011, 26 (9): 1763-84
This study investigated the prevalence and impact of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) on future intimate partner violence (IPV) in dating relationship in Hong Kong, China. A total of 1,154 Chinese adult respondents engaged in dating relationships were interviewed face-to-face about their CSA histories, childhood witnessing of parental violence, adult sexual victimization (ASV) by others and IPV victimization with their current dating partner. Self-reports also measured levels of suicidal ideation, self-esteem, and demographic details. Overall, 1.7% reported some form of CSA with a higher percentage being women. No gender differences were found in the prevalence of either ASV or IPV. Results showed that CSA had an independent effect on physical IPV and suicidal ideation. The odds of IPV were increased by behavioral and psychological factors of victims such as alcohol and drug abuse, sex with partner, and low self-esteem. The odds of suicidal ideation were also increased by drug abuse, childhood witnessing of parental psychological aggression, and low self-esteem. Clinical implications of results included screening for CSA victims and suicidal victims when treating IPV patients, tailoring treatment according to individual IPV victim's problems, correcting behaviors that are associated with risks of IPV, such as engagement in casual sex and substance abuse, and focusing not only on tangible services but also on the social and psychological aspects that are placing the victims at risk for IPV.

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