Presentation on theme: "Department of Prevention and Community Health"— Presentation transcript:
1 Department of Prevention and Community Health Losing the Gender in Gender-Based Violence The Missteps of Research on Dating and Intimate Partner ViolenceElizabeth Reed, ScD, MPHGeorge Washington University School of Public Health and Health ServicesDepartment of Prevention and Community Health
2 Outline of Presentation Background, including recent media attention to the issueDiscordance in the Frameworks used for understanding IPV and TDVGirls’ experiences of IPV/TDVData from boys who perpetrateConclusions & Future DirectionsDiscussionNote that this all came about shortly after the wave of dating violence research came out that did look at both boys and girls as victims (given the different framework used to understand dating violence – where it was thought of as more of kids play rather than IPV)The problem is the way we measure it, various girls will admit to hitting partners and boys will report being hit – but we are really not getting at the real dynamics of abusive relationships (e.g.manipulation, control, instilling fear and terror)-> no evidence exists that populations of men are suffering health consequences
3 My background on this issue Seeing teen dating violence and related abuses as an adolescent – and relevance of genderWorked with girls as a counselor and ER advocate at rape crisis centers in MA and PAServed as a public educator in high schools on issues related to teen dating violence and sexual assaultTrained in public health as a social epidemiologistMultiple years working as a researcher in these arenasNote that often IPV among teens is called teen dating violence – meant to distinguish it from adult partner violenceWhy I refer to it all as IPV
4 Definition/Background of IPV Intimate Partner Violence (IPV): domestic violence, dating violence, partner abuse, spousal abuse, batteringTypes of abuse: Physical, sexual, emotional, psychological, verbal, economicHistorically, the majority of research and practice efforts have considered this issue a form of violence against women and rooted in gender inequitiesNote that often IPV among teens is called teen dating violence – meant to distinguish it from adult partner violenceWhy I refer to it all as IPV and interchange IPV with TDV
5 Long Term Health Effects & Outcomes: Studies among Women/Girls - Reproductive (STI’s, HIV, unwanted pregnancy, rapidrepeat pregnancies, poor pregnancy outcomes – LBW,miscarriages, premature labor)- Mental health problems such as depression, suicide,eating disorders or unhealthy weight management,lowered self-esteemRiskier health behaviors:Sexual risk for STI/HIV (early sexual initiation, multiplepartners, unprotected sex)-Substance use (alcohol, illegal drugs, tobacco)- Chronic pain- Gastrointestinal symptoms and disorders- Hypertension and chest pain- AsthmaNote the ones specific to adolescents – unhealthy weight control, lower self-esteem, sexual risk behaviors, unwanted pregnancyAlso, important to consider what adolescent girls normally go through – minus experiencing IPV – these are all factors that plague adolescent girls even without experiencing IPV – so when we see these risks increase even more among this already vulnerable condition – it is a great concern for long term health and well-beingImportant to think about how experiencing this during such a vulnerable period of time might affect the entire lifecourse of girls…Multiple recent studies
6 Findings from previous literature on boys who perpetrate IPV Factors associated with IPV in previous research:Traditional attitudes towards gender roles (young adult men)CheatingMultiple partners, unprotected sexSubstance useExposure to abuse between parentsFamily violence victimizationOther types of violence exposure/involvementMultiple recent studies
7 Adolescents Girls and Young Adult Women are at Increased Risk for IPV Women aged 16 to 24 years experience the highest per capita rates of IPV1 in 5 High School Girls has experienced physical and/or sexual IPV1 in 10 (10%) girls report physical IPV in the past year>Important to focus on adolescents and young populations because they are the group most affected – but also because prevention is likely keyThe prevalence of dating violence victimization was very high among population:.The highest rates of IPV are commonly reported among a younger population of girlswomen age 16 most common clients of rape crisis centers in MA-females ages 13 to 19 the largest age group served-Friends and dating partners accounted for the majority of assailants-NVAWS, 54% of rape victims reported victimization prior to age 18; 25% of these were raped by dating partnersOver 1 in 10 female public high school students reported being physically victimized by a dating partner1 in 5, young women attending public high school in MA report being a victim of some form of dating violence.Rennison et al., NIJ; Silverman et al.,2001; CDC, 2002
9 Dating Violence in the Media Media coverage of 19 year old popular musician Chris Brown’s attack on girlfriend and fellow young musician, Rihanna brought considerable attention to the issue of dating violence last yearA study conducted by the Boston Public Health Commission surveyed local teens and found that nearly half reported Rihanna as responsible for the incident with Chris Brown, and more than half reported that both were to blame, despite knowledge that Rihanna needed medical attention as a result of being beaten by Brown.While this recent incident represents an unambiguous example of male perpetrated dating violence, the survey data taken from youth in Boston suggests that disturbing myths regarding this critical public health issue may still be widely supported among youth.
10 Dating Violence in the Media Unfortunately, such misperceptions of this issue are not limited to adolescents, but are also held by a number of us working in this area.There is continuing discord as to the basic frameworks used across studies and programs for understanding and addressing dating violence, particularly regarding the gendered basis of the problem.It is essential that we move beyond this discord in order to improve the quality and utility of our research and programming, including educating our youth regarding the true nature of partner violence among both adolescents and adults.
11 Conceptual Frameworks and Influence on Public Health Programs Historically, the framework we have around a disease or health related issue influences the ways we develop responsesMiasma versus Germ theoryExample –When I was young, I was eating at Friendly’s with my mom and I got the worst stomach ache afterwards. I remember her telling me that it was because I had a milkshake (which was cold) with a hot meal and that it was a bad idea to mix hot and cold when eating. I spent my whole life avoiding eating hot and cold together until a couple of years ago, when I really thought about it and how silly that is, really… This is an example of how one’s framework for understanding a health issues – in this case avoiding stomach aches – affects how they respond to prevent this issue from happening again.Everything we know is based on current perception – regardless of whether it is social science or medicine.Frameworks are usually based on our observations, which can be altered by various factors (e.g. cultural beliefs, social norms, social networks, personal exposures and experiences, etc)
12 Is this a gender-based issue Is this a gender-based issue? Recent Research Focuses on Female Perpetration of IPV as the Same Public Health ProblemLiterature on dating violence often perceives this as “kid’s play” – NOT considering it the same issue as IPVMany studies on TDV measured boys reports of victimization as well as girls’ reports of perpetration; many reported that both the boys and girls were perpetrating violence in similar proportions –some studies show that girls reported greater levels of perpetration compared to boysOften these studies were using the CTS, asking about whether they were “hit or slapped” by a partnerDeveloped the terms “reciprocal” and “mutual” or even “bidirectional” violence to describe this phenomenon, suggesting that in such teen dating relationships, both partners are initiating the aggressionAppears likely that this framework for examining TDV (as an issue that is not based on gender) has influenced recent research on IPVNote that this all came about shortly after the wave of dating violence research came out that did look at both boys and girls as victims (given the different framework used to understand dating violence – where it was thought of as more of kids play rather than IPV)The problem is the way we measure it, various girls will admit to hitting partners and boys will report being hit – but we are really not getting at the real dynamics of abusive relationships (e.g.manipulation, control, instilling fear and terror)-> no evidence exists that populations of men are suffering health consequences
13 Is this a gender-based issue? Gender-neutral framework appears to be US-derived and increasing among adult IPV research studies as wellReview Pub Med Studies:Using Pub Med, in 2008, 95% (21/22) of the studies on dating violence (using dating violence as the search term) used a gender-neutral framework.However, in 2008, 20% (18/70) of studies used a gender- neutral framework when examining adult IPV (using partner violence among a random sample of 70 studies).A decade earlier in 1998, while the majority of studies used the term domestic violence (implying male perpetrated violence against females), among the 13 studies that used the term partner violence, only 2 used a gender neutral framework.Among the most recent studies in 2008 that have used a gender-neutral framework, 93% of them have been US- based Reed, Raj. Miller, & Silverman, 2010Note that this all came about shortly after the wave of dating violence research came out that did look at both boys and girls as victims (given the different framework used to understand dating violence – where it was thought of as more of kids play rather than IPV)The problem is the way we measure it, various girls will admit to hitting partners and boys will report being hit – but we are really not getting at the real dynamics of abusive relationships (e.g.manipulation, control, instilling fear and terror)In a social situation, I was telling someone about my work and they asked me if the rates of IPV are higher in India. Thinking about it, it seemed funny to me to even compare the rates too much since we know that there are so many differences in the way people report this – stigma, acceptance of violence etcWhat is important to think of in terms of the prevalence of IPV/GBV is that it occurs more often in places and contexts where women have lower status and more traditional gender norms (that are unfavorable to women) are supported
14 Is this a gender-based issue? Arguments for a Gendered Focus1. Prevalence Issues, e.g. Much of measured “female perpetration” has been found to be in self-defense2. The health costs and associated consequences are greater for girls/women (e.g. pregnancy)3. Measurements used do not really measure the specific dynamics documented as part of IPV (control, manipulation, instilling fear etc) - instead we are asking about hitting or slapping, for example4. This type of violence has been shown to be rooted in gender inequities and related norms – this is not likely the etiology for any female-perpetrated abuse in relationshipsWhat is really the most important is this last one! Using a gender-neutral approach and classifying female abuse in relationships as the same public health problem does not make sense because it is not the same issue given that it is not rooted in the same problem!In fact, I have never seen a research study that groups boys and girls together when measuring partner violence – ALL STUDIES separate their analyses and findings by gender, which means that they expect different findings by sex! However, I find it especially strange that many of the resulting programs developed are for both boys and girls without recognizing any differences by gender… weird, eh?
15 1. Prevalence Issues; e.g. Much of measured “female perpetration” has been found to be in self-defense
16 Prevalence IssuesFemale perpetrated violence against intimate male partners has often been documented to be more likely as a result of self-defense or poor conflict management in relationshipsWith the exception of self-defense, female perpetration of violence against male partners is likely more closely related to other forms of non-gender specific unhealthy relationship behaviorStuart et al., 2006; Foshee, 1996; Molidor & Tolman, 1998;Coker, 2000; Ashley & Foshee, 2005
17 2. The health costs and associated consequences are greater for girls/women(e.g. pregnancy)
18 Mortality and Morbidity is Greater among Girls/Women Women and girls are more likely to be killed by male partners than any other class of individuals – a finding consistent across every study and every national context.Women and girls are more likely to be injured than men and boys due to violence from a partner, again, across each and every study on this topic.Large percentages of women and girls visiting emergency rooms are consistently found to be there based on violence from a male partner.WHO, Tjaden & Thoennes, & other selected studies
19 IPV and Sexual Risk for HIV/STI and Pregnancy: Findings from Women and Girls Women and girls reporting IPV are significantly more likely to report STD, HIV, unwanted/unplanned pregnancy, rapid repeat pregnancies and abortionsWomen and girls reporting IPV are significantly more likely to report:No and Inconsistent Condom and Contraceptive UseFear of condom negotiationPartner sexual infidelityPartner STD/HIV positive or unknown statusWomen in close relationships are less likely to use condoms (e.g. Misovich et al., 1997)Condoms represent distrust or a casual relationship; women and girls were invested in trusting, steady relationship (e.g., Fullilove et al., 1990; Holland et al., 1992)Women reporting lower general power in the relationship also reported higher HIV risk behaviors (e.g., Pulerwitz & Gortmaker, 1999; Wingood et al., 1995).HIV neg with HIV pos partner no use condomStatus from rel and willing to give up safety for it.Friend who works in a teen clinic with pregnant girls – among girls who are pregnant as teens – so many of them have been in relationships characterized by TDV – TDV is a huge issue related to teen pregnancy – however most of the teen preg prevention programs still focus on working with the girls only!Data from multiple studies with diverse populations over the past decade
20 Associations between Past Year IPV Perpetration and Sexual Risk and Fatherhood Sexual Risk/FatherhoodOR (95% CI)ORadj (95% CI)1Unprotected Vaginal Sex1.6 (.9-3.0)2.4 ( )Unprotected Anal Sex2.0 (.8-5.3)3.3 ( )Forced Unprotected Sex4.6 ( )5.2 ( )Sex with Other Women2.0 ( )2.2 ( )Fathered Any Children, ever.8 (.5-1.4).9 (.5-1.5)Fathered 3+ Children, ever1.6 (.8-3.0)2.5 ( )30% married40% dating1Adj for age, race, income, continental US residency length, relationship length.
21 Qualitative Study with Adolescent Female Victims of IPV Given the rising threats of HIV, more recently, research in this field has focused greatly on sexual risk for HIVSemi-structured interviews with 65 girls ages years recruited from victims’ programsParticipants asked to describe their relationships ---experiences of sexual risk, unwanted pregnancy, STD in the abusive relationshipFindings:Male partners control of many aspects related to sexMale partners refusal or sabotage of protectionFirst I will be reporting on preliminary results from the interviews with females reporting TDVWe recruited though TDV support programs and counselors addressing teen dating violenceparticipants were asked to describe their experiences in TDV relationships, with special focus on sexual decision-making and negotiation*Warning Graphic Content
22 Lack of Control Around Sex in IPV Relationship “…he wanted it 5 times a day, twice during the night….plus I was pregnant…And if I didn't give it to him, he'd beat the crap out of me, and then would force me to have it, and I would say no, and he would keep on just doing it, so I would lay there and just cry, and wouldn't care.”You can really see how the context of an IPV relationship can affect girls’ control over when she has sex and frequency of sex
23 Lack of Control Around Sex in IPV Relationship “I'm not gonna say he raped me... he didn't use force, but I would be like, "No," and then, next thing, he pushes me to the bedroom, and I'm like, "I don't want to do anything, " and then, we ended up doin' it, and I was cryin' like a baby, and he still did it. And then, after that... he got up, took his shower, and I just stayed there like shock... “Again, this quote showcases male perpetrator’s entitlement and control around sex
24 Perpetrator condom refusal linked to STD and victim-blaming “.... I told him to put a condom on, he didn't. ..I went to a clinic, and they were like, "Oh, he gave you Chlamydia." [H]e said it was me messin' around with some other guy, and that's not true, 'cause I was like, "You were the only guy I was with." And he's like, "Oh, that's you, you're messin' around," he's like, “fuck you, I thought you loved me."Male perpetrator’s refusal to wear a condom, giving his female partner an STD and then blaming her for the STD; steering away from taking any responsibility for protection and for the STD
25 Birth Control Sabotage leading to Pregnancy “I was on the birth control, and I was still taking it, and he ended up getting mad and flushing it down the toilet, so I ended up getting pregnant.I found out that [before this] he talked to my friends and he told them that we were starting a family. I didn't know that. I didn't want to start a family. I wanted to finish school.”Participants also described other forms of birth control manipulation on the part of the perpetrator.“I was on the birth control, and I was still taking it, and he ended up getting mad and flushing it down the toilet, so I ended up getting pregnant.I found out that [before this] he talked to my friends and he told them that we were starting a family. I didn't know that. I didn't want to start a family. I wasn't even done with school. I wanted to finish school.”In this example the perpetrator intended the pregnancy whereas the girl did not.These examples of differences in intentions regarding pregnancy are clearly putting girls at risk for unwanted pregnancy, as well as STDsTalk about these findings – cross section – are they consequences or risk factors.Much of this research we have done related to sexual risk shows that it is not the sexual behaviors of the girls so much as it is the behaviors of the boys that increases girls’ risk for STD, pregnancy and HIV. We have some findings among boys that also showcases this aspect as well that I will discuss later…
26 Research on girls’ experiences of IPV These studies show how girls’ risks for STDs, pregnancy, etc are heightened as a result of IPVProvides further information on the context of these relationships, the types of abuse, and evidence on how girls’ lives are affected – particularly related to pregnancy
27 3. Measurements used do not really measure the specific dynamics documented as part of IPV (pattern of control, manipulation, instilling fear etc) Conflict Tactics Scale has been used – this is not a scale that was developed to measure intimate partner violence
28 The Context of IPV and TDV “And you can see my heart beating. You can see it through my chest. And I’m terrified but I’m not leaving . Know that I must must pass this test So just pull the trigger…As my life flashes before my eyes, I’m wondering will I ever see another sunrise? So many won’t get the chance to say goodbye. But it’s too late too pick up the value of my life.”-RihannaAgain, this quote showcases male perpetrator’s entitlement and control around sex
29 Measurement of IPVSuch recent focus on female IPV perpetration may be a result of IPV measures that have often been limited to items assessing only physical violence (often including measures such as “hitting or slapping” a partner)Such items lack specificity to capture other core elements of IPV (e.g. control, patterning of abuse, intimidation).In future studies, IPV may need to be better distinguished by using data measures and interpretation that parallel an adopted framework - preferably a framework that considers IPV within the scope of gender-based violence.
30 4. Male perpetrated violence against intimate partners has been shown to be rooted in gender inequities and related norms
31 The Relevance of Gender Inequities and Related Norms to IPV Perpetration Many studies have documented that intimate partner violence is strongly related to beliefs in the inferiority of women and girls, and men’s and boys’ entitlement to control female partners via violence (e.g. WHO, Santana et al., 2006)Country level data highlights that factors related to gender equality (e.g. civil liberties, political rights, occupation of parliamentary seats by women) are related to deaths from gender-based violence (Palma-Solis et al., 2008)
32 Traditional Masculine Gender Norms Linked to Both Risky Sex and IPV Sexual RiskORadj (95% CI)Unprotected Vaginal Sex2.3 ( )1Forced Unprotected Sex1.4 ( )2IPV Perpetration1.8 ( )3Perceptions of male hypersexuality, entitlement for female servitude/submission, and need for respect.Analysis adjusted for age, relationship length.Analysis adjusted for age, Hispanic ethnicity.Analysis adjusted for age, relationship length, non-English speaking.Santana et al., 2006
33 Partner Violence in Relation to Boys’ Support of Traditional Gender Norms Total Sample (n=275)Boys Reporting Sex (n=134) coefficient, SE, and p valueCrude Analyses coefficient, SE, and p valueAdjusted Analyses**Partner Violence Perpetration (Report Sexual Violence or Physical Violence or Psychological Violence/Threats)1.7, 0.6, (0.003)1.5, 0.6, (0.009)2.2, 0.7, (0.002)1.9, 0.7, (0.01)Perceptions of male hypersexuality, entitlement for female servitude/submission, and need for respect.* cronbach alpha = 0.93**Adjusted for living situation (live with family – yes/no)Reed, unpublished
34 Qualitative Study with Adolescent Male Perpetrators of IPV Interviews with boys ages years recruited from community and school programs; identified as abusive to a female partner24 interviewsParticipants asked to describe relationship and sexual norms as well as other general aspects of their lives; we looked at the different life contexts of boys (family, peer, school, and community)Boys in these programs who we interviewed often reported various challenges across life contextsMaltreatment of girls was the norm in many of their social contexts – boys are not engaging in anti-social behavior; this is very pro-socialKeep in mind that these are urban boys in programs for perpetration of IPV – these findings may not be generalizable to all boys who perpetrate IPV but gives us some insight into the potential factors that may play a role in influencing perpetration.Also, this is just a qualitative study and more quantitative study is needed to conform these findings are related to IPV perpetration.*Warning Graphic ContentReed et al., 2008
35 Results – Qualitative Findings Peer ContextIssues related to girls and sex, which often included negative attitudes towards girls“…They [girls] don’t know no better… Their mind’s not strong enough to basically get over it, ‘cause like, a guy could talk to a girl, like, “You bitch, you fuckin’ ho’, this and that,” but she’s gonna like it because she’s gonna think he loves her ... Like, he could hit a female, …and she might cry? But when she go home, she’s gonna ...love you even more. …she don’t have that mind power to figure out that you’re playin’ her? …Like she’ll go for the bait, and after that, it’s do whatever you want.”This next quote is an example of boys’ peer context and negative attitudes towards girls“…They [girls]don’t know no better… Their mind’s not strong enough to basically get over it, ‘cause like, a guy could talk to a girl, like, “You bitch, you fuckin’ ho’, this and that,” but she’s gonna like it because she’s gonna think he loves her ... Like, he could hit a female, …and she might cry? But when she go home, she’s gonna ...love you even more. …it’s all in the way you talk to a girl. … you talk to her, like...”[talking in a smooth manner], … she don’t have that mind power to figure out that you’re playin’ her? …Like, she’ll go for the bait, and after that, it’s do whatever you want.
36 Results – Qualitative Findings Peer ContextIssues related to girls and sex, which often included maltreatment of female sex partners“My boy had a party, and there was like a couple of girls there... we were tryin’ to DO somethin’... with ‘em, and …we just like laced the blunt... put coke in it…. I don’t think she knew about it. …her face was like purple, then... after that, I just seen her on the knees for like the whole day (chuckles), like... she was doin’ everybody. She [probably] felt like she was getting... terrorized or somethin’, like... they, …put her in slavery or somethin’.”This quote is an example of the maltreatment of girls within boys’ peer context. Here the boys describe trains, which usually involve various boys taking turns to have sex with one girl.“My boy had a party, and there was like a couple of girls there... we were tryin’ to DO somethin’... with ‘em, and …we just like laced the blunt... put coke in it…. I don’t think she knew about it. …her face was like purple, then... after that, I just seen her on the knees for like the whole day (chuckles), like... she was doin’ everybody. She [probably] felt like she was getting... terrorized or somethin’, like... they, …put her in slavery or somethin’.”We have a paper coming out soon on trains. Many boys in this sample had reported to participate in trains, most knew about them and had stories about them.
37 Results – Qualitative Findings More quotes on boys’ norms related to maltreatment of girls“ ...basically... just free pussy, and they could f* it however... much time they want… over and over again... until basically, they... they satisfy ‘em.[So, who are the girls...?]“... if they’re drunk, like... [for some girls] all you have to do is get ‘em drunk, and that’s basically it.”
38 Results – Qualitative Findings More quotes on boys’ norms related to maltreatment of girls – “turning girls out”“…they could brag about, “Oh, I turned on, this and that..” she might look good, she might have a big old butt and nice little figure, he could basically brag, sayin’, “Oh, I turned her out. That’s MY ‘ho.” Like that, basically.”“Yeah, we have like... we have like competitions. Like... like if... well, what we call it is ‘turnin’ a girl,’ ‘turnin’ her out.’ Like, say one of my buddies gets a girl, we’d be like, ‘Oh, bet you can’t turn her out.’ … Or, they’ll say it to me, or... it’s all like competition. ‘Oh, I bet you can’t do this and this with her.’ …When I was [living] out in [name of town], I used to do it every... every night...”
39 Results – Qualitative Findings More quotes on boys’ norms related to maltreatment of girls“He turned her around, and like he makin’ money with her? …That’s even more braggin’ rights. He could brag even more. …I think the easiest girls to like turn out? …Is a run-away. That’s the easiest whore.”Hard to see these quotes and think that gender norms are just not relevant to this issue!
40 Frameworks matter: We use frameworks to guide our research that informs our programs
41 Frameworks MatterGender-based violence, including male violence against intimate partners, is a public health topic shown to affect populations of women globally and became recognized as a critical public health threat and human rights issue through decades of grassroots efforts and community initiated strategiesGlobal consensus on the framing of partner/dating violence as gender-based (WHO and other major public health authorities)Violence against women is seen as a clear and continuing threat to the lives and well-being of millions of women and girls worldwide
42 Frameworks MatterThe gender-neutral approach is not grounded in community or grassroots efforts to address a public health issueAcademic production of a public health problemBecame more popular after TDV research initiated that considered this issue “kids play” rather than a form of IPVWhile men and women can be in abusive intimate relationships, we cannot ignore the relevance of gender power imbalances and how these play a role in intimate relationships between genders as well as how this has affected women on a global level throughout history
43 Frameworks MatterGlobally, and within every country, populations of men have not been threatened by this issue in the same way that we have observed among populations of women throughout historyAbuse in relationships of any kind is wrong and, while all forms of violence may be rooted in issues related to power and control, we need to distinguish violence rooted in long-standing oppression and inequities from other forms of violence and abuseBullying – story of girl in MA who hung herself after being harassed by a boy and girls in school – she had some sort of sexual relation with him, other girls became jealous – his ex? – and so they called her a slut and a whore etc – and I think they got him to dislike her as well – and she killed herself as a result. They call this bullying. To me, this is so relevant to gender! When someone is harassed because of their sexual orientation or race/ethnicity – we usually refer it as a hate crime or racially charged violence – not just bullying! If we have a form of violence that is targeting a group based on gender, sexual orientation, race/ethnicity, nativity etc – we have to ensure that we have interventions that address these inequities or we will without doubt FAIL to address these issues!
44 ConclusionAbuse and unhealthy behaviors can exist across a number of different types of relationshipsCertainly, abuse in intimate relationships is of particular concernLike other types of violence rooted in inequities, male violence against women/girls needs to be addressed using a framework that is gender- basedWe should not ignore that the majority of male perpetrated violence against intimate partners is likely rooted in gender-based inequities and related norms disfavoring womenThe need to control and desire for power and dominance can lead to violent and/or abusive relationships between intimate partners, in dating relationships, between friends, or classmates, within families, at work, in neighborhoods, across countries and throughout various contexts of our lives; however, it is important to consider that many forms of violence are rooted in historic and enduring inequity. Such forms of violence need special attention and intervention efforts that address these inequities!I am not trying to say that women cannot be abusive – we all know that girls are not really all “made of sugar and spice and everything nice.” I don’t think that by having a gendered framework for looking at this issue means that girls/women are never abusive as well. I don’t think we could ever rule out a group and say, well this group is just not capable of violence or abuse! My framework for looking at this issue is that we need to make sure we distinguish violence produced from historical inequity and resulting norms disfavoring girls and women – from that of other forms of abuse in relationships.Take the example of racially motivated violence - and historic abuse against black men – with an issue like this, it is clear that the inequities are the root of this violence and what needs to be addressed when addressing such violence. We would not go ahead and say, well white men are victims of violence too – because I think in this case, we all agree that with violence resulting from such inequities, there is a need for special attention to these inequities to reduce this violence.The majority of male violence and abuse against women and girls REALLY is different and has different root causes.
45 UNSTUDIED ETIOLOGY MALE PERPETRATED VIOLENCE AGAINST FEMALE PARTNERS Social environmentsupportive ofmaltreatment ofwomen/girls, includingexposure to violenceagainst women(e.g. domestic violencebetween parents)MALEPERPETRATED VIOLENCEAGAINSTFEMALEPARTNERSEnvironmental exposures(e.g. trouble in school,family disruptions,economic burdens,community disorganization,exposure to contextssupportive of violence,context of substance use,racial discrimination)Beliefs around inferiority ofwomen/girls; embracetraditional gender normsWomen’s/girls’ exposureto or victimizationfrom male perpetratedpartner violence orother forms ofviolence againstwomenGENDER-BASED INEQUITIESWomen’s/girls’reports of self-defenseUNSTUDIED ETIOLOGYEnvironmental exposures?Other power and control issues notrelated to gender?Does not appear to be a population levelconcern related to genderFEMALE PERPETRATED VIOLENCE/ABUSEAGAINST MALE PARTNERS
46 Gender-based Framework: Need for Understanding how Structures Play a role in IPV perpetration Existing studies have often pointed to individual characteristics of males, (e.g. substance use behaviors)Perpetrating IPV is not something that occurs evenly among all boys, but rather, it affects certain groups of boys moreUsing a gender-based framework for looking at IPV, we need to consider the gendered power imbalances within societies, communities, and families that affect how men and boys engage with women and girls as intimate partners.We need to address this issue in a way that considers factors much bigger than individual decisions and behaviors.
47 A Gender-Based Framework: Summary Important to recognize that if we accept a framework that is gender-based, then we need prevention efforts that seek to change some of these problematic gender normsStructural change – rather than blaming boys for perpetration or girls as victims; e.g. boys who perpetrate are often acting in ways that are parallel with their exposures and social normsMany gender norms that promote male dominance and control are also bad for the health and well-being of boys/men; e.g. linked to greater sexual risk taking, substance and tobacco use, unintentional injury, deaths related to suicide, injuries and homicides related to non-partner specific violenceHealth interventions are needed that address the structural influences related to such gender norms to reduce the multitude of health threats to boys and men as well as to decrease associated violence against women throughout the globeInterventions are needed to reach both boys and girlsMy brother’s friends
48 ImplicationsIf we fail to understand the gendered nature and basis of dating and partner violence, we will, without doubt, fail in attempts to develop programs, policies, and educational campaigns to address this highly prevalent and debilitating public health threat.Progress in this arena is vitally important, particularly among young populations1) to prevent such violence from becoming a pattern of behavior into adulthood among boys and young men2) to reduce the impact of gender-based violence across the lifecourse among women and girls.
49 AcknowledgementsElizabeth Miller, University of California, DavisAnita Raj, Boston University School of Public HealthJay Silverman, Harvard School of Public Health
50 DiscussionWhat do you think about the media attention and the response from Boston youth related to the Chris Brown and Rihanna incident? Have you heard similar remarks regarding this incident or other incidents? Have you heard other comments specific to the gendered nature of this topic?How has your thinking on this topic been informed by your work and related exposures?
51 DiscussionDo you think we need to better distinguish these forms of violence and abuse? (male-perpetrated violence against women versus other forms of abusive relationships) If so, how should we do this?
52 DiscussionIn what ways does the framework we use for understanding this issue affect the types of programs that are developed? (prevention and intervention programming)How has our framework for understanding this issue already affected the programs that have been developed at this time? (e.g. many primary prevention programs solely focus on preventing victimization rather than focusing on preventing perpetration, why?)How might using a gender-neutral framework versus a gender-based framework affect program development?
53 DiscussionGiven a gender-based framework, what type of interventions might be important for addressing TDV among adolescents?Relevant components? Structural interventions? Behavioral interventions?Think specifically about the populations with whom you are working