Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Women who beat men

A new study shows that more women than men initiate "intimate partner
violence" and that, when they do, most men do not hit back. The NY Daily News reports:
Women are as violent as their male companions - and sometimes more so, according to a controversial study presented yesterday at a domestic violence conference in Manhattan.

The survey of 13,600 college students came to the surprising conclusion that in the majority of abusive relationships, women are the perpetrators at least as often as they are the victims of violence.

About one-third of students in 32 countries said they assaulted their partner in a survey conducted by the Family Research Laboratory at the University of New Hampshire.

In 69% of cases, both men and women were violent. But women were the sole perpetrators in 21% of cases, compared with about 10% of relationships in which men were the only batterers.

Author Murray Straus, who presented the study at the Trends in Intimate Violence Intervention conference at NYU, said there was "overwhelming evidence that women assault their partners at about the same rate as men."

"The idea of chivalry is alive. Men genuinely believe 'never hit a woman' - up to a certain point. So when she gets angry at him and slaps him, kicks him, throws something, most men don't retaliate. But if she keeps on doing that, then it moves into the both doing it," Straus said.

"So many women have told me, 'I knew I wouldn't hurt him.' It's for some women a quintessentially feminine thing to do, to slap the cad," he said.
Other studies show similar results.