Background: This study aimed to identify factors associated with intimate partner violence against women in women living in Belgrade, Serbia.
Method: A cross-sectional, population based household survey was conducted in Belgrade as part of the World Health Organization Multi-Country study on Women’s Health and Domestic Violence, using a standard questionnaire. Face to face interviews were conducted with 1,456 women 15-49 years old. Data used in this paper were from a subset of 886 women who ever cohabited with their male intimate partners. The association between various factors at individual and relationship level and reported physical or sexual partner violence, or both, was assessed by univariate and multivariate logistic regression analysis.
Results: Multivariate logistic regression modelling revealed that partner violence was significantly associated with a number of factors relating to the male partner: daily alcohol consumption (AOR 4.25; 95% CI 1.78-10.11), having affairs (AOR 3.97; 95% CI 1.62-9.57; fighting with other men (AOR 3.62; 95% CI 1.91-6.88); his mother having experienced spousal abuse (AOR 2.71; 95% CI 1.40-5.23), and he himself being beaten as a child (AOR 3.14; 95% CI 1.48-6.63). Among the factors related to the women, only forced or unwanted first sexual intercourse was independently associated with exposure to partner violence (AOR 2.50; 95% CI 1.05-5.96).
Conclusion: The majority of factors associated with intimate partner violence related to the male partner; in particular his childhood experiences of violence in his own family. Long term violence prevention programmes should target boys growing up in families with domestic violence.
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