Relationship violence negatively affects well-being, and is costly for individuals, couples, children, and society. Research has been conducted on teen dating violence (TDV) and marital relationships, but little research has focused on early adulthood, the period in which intimate partner violence (IPV) increases exponentially in frequency and seriousness. IPV necessarily occurs within a relationship context, but knowledge of the dynamics of young adult violent relationships is especially limited. Our symbolic interactionist theory emphasizes respondents'perceptions of the meanings and impact of IPV, and the need to identify universal and uniquely gendered aspects of IPV as individual's transition from adolescence to adulthood. We build on a large, prospective longitudinal study of adolescent and young adults'intimate relationships (Toledo Adolescent Relationships Study-TARS). In addition to four waves of previously collected interview data (n=1,319), currently we have funding to conduct a fifth wave of interviews with the youngest cohort (about one-third of the existing sample), focusing on three forms of violent victimization and perpetration (physical violence, psychological abuse, and sexual coercion). We request funding to conduct interviews with the two older cohorts (ages 24 &26 at interview) who are at the peak ages of IPV, and to conduct separate in-depth interviews with both partners of a subsample of respondents (50 couples, n=100) reporting experience with IPV. We will address the following specific aims: 1: To analyze the incidence, prevalence, and patterns of relationship abuse from adolescence to young adulthood. The longitudinal design (ages 13-26) permits assessments of the sociodemographic patterning and developmental progressions of IPV experience. We will explore early risk factors and contemporaneous circumstances associated with trajectories of perpetration and victimization. We will identify factors linked to IPV escalation and persistence, and determine the long term effects of IPV on behavioral and emotional health as well as adult union formation and stability. 2: To examine similarities and differences in the nature, qualities and dynamics within violent and non-violent relationships. We focus on the subjectively experienced dynamics of intimate relationships that we hypothesize amplify the risk of violence, and identify ways in which gender affects these subjective experiences. We include attention to positive features of intimate relationships which have not figured heavily into either research or prevention efforts, but may be critical to understanding relationship dynamics associated with heightened risk, as well as decisions to continue or leave a violent relationship. The TARS elicits information about multiple relationships at each wave, so we can examine within-individual changes across time and different relationships. 3: To identify situational contexts that amplify risk for violence. In most instances, relationship violence is not a routine event highlighting the need for research on situational factors that amplify risk. We will document the progression of abuse within relationships by assessing cognitive, emotional, behavioral and social factors that influence patterns of escalation and de-escalation.

Public Health Relevance

Our analysis of social relationships and their influence across the period of adolescence into adulthood encompasses the NICHD goal of applying a life course approach to research on health and fits squarely in the mission of NICHD to investigate the health and well-being of individuals, families and populations. Relationship violence negatively influences physical health and emotional well being, and is costly for individuals, couples, children, and society. The study is also consistent with the 2007 Long Range Planning Report, which calls for research on the the mechanisms through which social and economic realities shape individual health, especially among disadvantaged populations with context as the key mechanism, including dyadic relationships.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Research Project (R01)
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Study Section
Social Sciences and Population Studies Study Section (SSPS)
Program Officer
Newcomer, Susan
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Bowling Green State University
Social Sciences
Schools of Arts and Sciences
Bowling Green
United States
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Kaufman-Parks, Angela M; DeMaris, Alfred; Giordano, Peggy C et al. (2018) Intimate Partner Violence Perpetration from Adolescence to Young Adulthood: Trajectories and the Role of Familial Factors. J Fam Violence 33:27-41
Manning, Wendy D; Longmore, Monica A; Giordano, Peggy C (2018) Cohabitation and Intimate Partner Violence during Emerging Adulthood: High Constraints and Low Commitment. J Fam Issues 39:1030-1055
Kaufman-Parks, Angela M; DeMaris, Alfred; Giordano, Peggy C et al. (2017) Parents and partners: Moderating and mediating influences on intimate partner violence across adolescence and young adulthood. J Soc Pers Relat 34:1295-1323
Copp, Jennifer E; Giordano, Peggy C; Longmore, Monica A et al. (2016) The Development of Attitudes Toward Intimate Partner Violence: An Examination of Key Correlates Among a Sample of Young Adults. J Interpers Violence :
Giordano, Peggy C; Johnson, Wendi L; Manning, Wendy D et al. (2016) PARENTING IN ADOLESCENCE AND YOUNG ADULT INTIMATE PARTNER VIOLENCE. J Fam Issues 37:443-465
Longmore, Monica A; Manning, Wendy D; Copp, Jennifer E et al. (2016) A Prospective Study of Adolescents' Sexual Partnerships on Emerging Adults' Relationship Satisfaction and Intimate Partner Aggression. Emerg Adulthood 4:403-416
Copp, Jennifer E; Giordano, Peggy C; Manning, Wendy D et al. (2016) Couple-Level Economic and Career Concerns and Intimate Partner Violence in Young Adulthood. J Marriage Fam 78:744-758
Giordano, Peggy C; Copp, Jennifer E; Longmore, Monica A et al. (2016) Anger, Control, and Intimate Partner Violence in Young Adulthood. J Fam Violence 31:1-13
Johnson, Wendi L; Giordano, Peggy C; Manning, Wendy D et al. (2015) The age-IPV curve: changes in the perpetration of intimate partner violence during adolescence and young adulthood. J Youth Adolesc 44:708-26
Johnson, Wendi L; Manning, Wendy D; Giordano, Peggy C et al. (2015) Relationship Context and Intimate Partner Violence From Adolescence to Young Adulthood. J Adolesc Health 57:631-6

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