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Relationship Processes in the Development of Teen Dating Violence

NCJ Number
Date Published
February 2019
20 pages
This is the "Final Summary Overview" of an intensive observational longitudinal study of 200 New York City 14- to-18-year-old dating couples that sought to determine 1) whether maladaptive interaction patterns in teen dating relationships are associated with teen dating violence (TDV); 2) whether the same maladaptive interaction patterns that predict current TDV predict future TDV; 3) whether the effects of maladaptive interaction patterns on TDV transcend the relationship in which they were observed; and 4) whether risk factors identified in prior research explain TDV through their impact on maladaptive interaction patterns.
The method for recruiting couples is described, along with the laboratory procedures used to examine whether and/or how couples interacted in performing various tasks with short time requirements (the longest was 20 minutes). Analysis of videos of the interactive behaviors of couples in performing various joint tasks focused on how they handled conflicts in their task performance and their "cool down" behavior after perceptions of winning or losing in conflicts. Each of the various couple tasks are briefly described in this report. Over the period of this longitudinal study, each participant was asked follow-up questions online, which included whether or not they were still dating the partner with whom they completed the laboratory assessment. Analysis of individual behaviors found that physical aggression occurred among 58.4 percent of the couples, and psychological aggression occurred among 97.1 percent of the couples. The mean number of conflict bouts per couple was 6.7. Behavioral and psychological patterns during and after conflicts are noted, along with the impact on the future of the relationship. 1 table and 26 references

Date Published: February 1, 2019