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Male Batterers Think More People Abuse Than Actually Do

Male batterers tend to think more men abuse women than actually do, according to a recent study that will be published in the social sciences journal Violence Against Women.

And the more these men overestimated how common violence against women is the more likely they were to abuse their partners in the previous 90 days, the study said.

“Men who engage in violent behavior justify it in their mind by thinking it is more common and saying, ‘Most guys slap their women around so it is OK to engage in it.’ Or it could be that misperceptions about violence cause the behavior,” said Clayton Neighbors, lead author of the study.

Neighbors is  a University of Washington affiliate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and a professor of psychology at the University of Houston.

Co-authors of the study include Lyungai Mbilinyi, a research assistant professor of social work at the University of Washington; Joan Zegree, an adjunct assistant professor of social work at the University of Washington; Jeffrey Edleson, a social work professor at the University of Minnesota; and Roger Roffman, University of Washington emeritus social work professor.

To learn more about the study click here. And to find out how social workers help stop domestic violence visit the National Association of Social Workers’ “Help Starts Here” Web section on domestic violence by clicking here.

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