Challenges to developing better interventions for Male IPV victims

Challenges to developing better interventions for male IPV victims range include those related to study methodologies and classification of IPV. The section below evaluates such challenges.

Classification of Intimate Partner Violence

Intimate partner violence has traditionally been conceptualized as an outcome of partriachial society where men use violence to establish and maintain power and control over their female partners (Brooks, 2010). Findings of female-perpetrated IPV have thus been received with criticism, with suggestions being that IPV should only be considered on the context of power and control (Hines & Douglas, 2010a). Attempting to address such controversy, Johnson (1995) conceptualized IPV to constitute two forms of victimization. According to Johnson (1995), the first type, Partriachial terrorism, referred to the more severe forms of IPV, which were conceptualized to be perpetuated by males and never by females. Such form of IPV was deemed to arise from the man’s use of violence to maintain power and control. They included aspects such as wife battering that entail physical abuse to the female. However, with the realization that female also perpetrate similar forms of violence on their male partners, the terminology assumed to refer to such severe forms of violence has been intimate terrorism (Hines & Douglas, 2010a). Due to the focus of feminist movements on such forms of violence in advancing their cause, there has however been a resistance to the idea that females also perpetrate intimate terrorism (Hines & Douglas, 2010a). For instance, some arguments persist that even where women engage in physical abuse, they are more likely to get more physical injuries in case of retaliation since they are more vulnerable than men (Hines & Douglas, 2010a).

The second form of IPV according to Johnson (1995) iscommon couple violence (CCV). This form is argued to be widespread in relationships and involves subtle forms of violence such as emotional abuse. CCV was conceptualized to be perpetrated by either gender and was not a core focus of the feminist movements in their pursuit of equality in society. Recent evidence however suggest that both genders could engage in the both forms of IPV (Hines & Douglas, 2010a). However, lack of agreement relating to perpetration of intimate violence by females pose a challenge for developing programs that curb victimization of male. This arises since such controversy enhances the barriers for male victims to seek help for their victimization since the society’s perception regards the male to be the perpetrator of intimate violence.

Methodological Challenges of Studies Assessing Male Victimization by their Intimate Partners

Various methodological challenges limit the extent to which research on male victimization by their intimate partners can provide evidence for use in practice. One of the challenges relates to the use of self-reports using male participants to determine prevalence and incidence of female-perpetrated IPV. The studies by Hines and Douglas (2010a; 2010b) for instance evidence such a limitation in their quest to determine the prevalence and characteristics of victimized males. Self-reports, as noted by Hines and Douglas (2010a) are subject to reporting bias with studies indicating that male perpetrators tend to emphasize the perpetration by females while underestimating the perpetration the mete out to their partners. Such bias could result into inaccurate results thus affecting the credibility of the study as a basis for interventions aimed at encouraging male victims to seek treatment. Related to the challenge of self-report is the challenge of inability to validate data obtained from self-report through interviews with partners of the male victims (Hines & Douglas, 2010a). Such an aspect also influences the accuracy of data thus limiting the extent to which studies generated in such a fashion can be employed to develop treatment interventions.

Another methodological challenge arises with the sample settings that result into predominantly Caucasian male participants. As evident from the study by Flinck and Paavilainen (2011), culture is a core influence on the perception of violence against men thus findings from one culture may not provide accurate guides to occurrences in other cultures. Due to differences in perception of disclosure of male victimization in different cultures, studies that are apply to a broad spectrum of population may be hard to perform. For instance, cultural differences could influence males’ disclosure of victimization by female partners (Brooks, 2010). When this is the case, researchers might find it difficult to get participants from cultures that discourage disclosure thus resulting into a small sample size. Small sample sizes would in turn affect the generalizability of results from studies using such samples. go to conclusion here.

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