247630 Assessing the prevalence of intimate partner violence (IPV) among Iraq (OIF) and Afghanistan (OEF) war veterans and their partners

Monday, October 31, 2011: 12:50 PM

Anne Demers, EdD, MPH , Department of Health Science, San Jose State University, San Jose, CA
Elena Klaw, PhD , Psychology, San Jose State University, San Jose, CA
Britany Alarid , Psychology, San Jose State University, San Jose, CA
Ricky Townsend , Psychology, San Jose State University, San Jose, CO
Angela Hickenbottom , Psychology, San Jose State University, San Jose, CA
Alea Gellman , Health Science Department, San Jose State University, San Jose, CA
Research shows that, irrespective of a diagnosis of mental health disorder, combat veterans are at increased risk for anxiety, depression, and anger symptomology. Veteran's anger, in particular, is related to an increased likelihood of committing IPV. OIF and OEF veterans at two-year, and four-year colleges and universities throughout California were recruited to complete an electronic survey designed for the purpose of better understanding the issue of IPV among this population. Results revealed that the traditional model of power and control used to understand IPV, may not fully explain the issue among veterans. Between 20-30% of survey respondents were significantly psychologically distressed (i.e., depressed and/or anxious), and psychological distress was significantly (positively) correlated with alcohol use, hypermasculinity, aggressive behavior, anger and belief in domestic violence myths; and significantly (negatively) correlated with social support and negotiation tactics. In addition, anger was found to be significantly correlated with psychological aggression (emotional and verbal abuse). Using hierarchical regression analysis, four models were developed one each to predict psychological aggression, negotiation tactics, domestic violence myths, and anger. Based on the findings, a 6-module curriculum was developed and piloted with veterans, addressing the impact of military culture, experiences, and post-separation transition on relationships between veterans and their intimate partners, for the purpose of 1) examining how life changes and losses affect relationships, 2) teaching skills to address anger, communication, and intimacy issues; and 3) referring veterans to mental health and counseling resources for screening and treatment. Research results and curriculum assessment will be presented.

Learning Areas:
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Public health or related education
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Explain the differences in IVP between veteran and civilian populations 2. Discuss the role of military culture in IVP 3. Describe the importance of incorporating military culture into IPV prevention education and intervention programs

Keywords: Veterans, Mental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have conducted research among veterans for the last 7 years. I was Co-PI on this research, and co-designed and implemented the curriculum.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.