Influence of intimate terrorism, situational couple violence, and mutual violent control on male victims

Denise A. Hines, Emily M. Douglas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


The goal of the current study is to test-among samples of men-some previous findings relative to Johnson's (2008) typology of partner violence (PV). Among samples of exclusively women, Johnson found that the frequency and severity of PV-and victims' mental health-are worse for female victims of intimate terrorism (IT) than of situational couple violence (SCV). However, such findings have rarely been tested in male victims of PV. Furthermore, although Johnson posited that mutual violent control (MVC) is relatively rare, other research suggest that it is about as common as IT and may be associated with worse PV and health. We examined the relative frequency and severity of various forms of PV, and the relative health and mental health between men who (a) experienced IT versus SCV and (b) experienced IT versus MVC. Our two samples were 611 men who sought help for PV victimization and 1,601 men from a population-based sample. Our analyses showed that across samples, men who were victims of IT had significantly worse mental health than men who experienced SCV, and IT victims experienced more severe and frequent PV, including physical, sexual, and nonphysical forms of PV. Male victims of IT had worse mental and physical health than men who either perpetrated IT or experienced MVC, but men involved in MVC were involved in relationships with more types of PV than either male IT perpetrators or male victims. Results are discussed in terms of their implications for Johnson's typology, future research, and service providers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)612-623
Number of pages12
JournalPsychology of Men and Masculinity
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2018


  • Domestic violence
  • Intimate terrorism
  • Male victims
  • Partner violence


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