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Prevalence and Consequences of Male-to-Female and Female-to-Male Intimate Partner Violence as Measured by the National Violence Against Women Survey

NCJ Number
Violence Against Women Volume: 6 Issue: 2 Dated: February 2000 Pages: 142-161
Date Published
February 2000
20 pages

This article compares the prevalence and consequences of violence perpetrated against men and women by marital and opposite-sex cohabiting partners.


The study used data from a telephone survey of 8,000 men and 8,000 women in the United States. Married/cohabiting women reported significantly more intimate perpetrated rape, physical assault and stalking than did married/cohabiting men, whether the time period considered was the respondent’s lifetime or the 12 months preceding the survey. Women also reported more frequent and longer lasting victimization, fear of bodily injury, time lost from work, injuries, and use of medical, mental health, and justice system services. Thus, information from the National Violence Against Women Survey provides compelling evidence that men’s and women’s experiences with violence at the hands of marital and cohabiting partners differ greatly both qualitatively and quantitatively. These results contradict findings from some previous studies that showed symmetry in men’s and women’s risk of marital/cohabiting partner violence. Further research is needed to fully understand what impact introductory statements and question-framing practices have on prevalence estimates generated by surveys using similar behaviorally specific screening questions. Tables, references

Date Published: February 1, 2000