Intimate Partner Violence Among Sexual Minority Adults in Consensual Non-Monogamous Relationships




Do, Quyen Ai

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Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a serious public health issue with deleterious effects. Unfortunately, IPV is often overlooked in marginalized populations such as individuals who practice consensual non-monogamy (CNM). Deduced from existing literature, CNM-partnered sexual minority individuals may be at elevated risk of IPV due to factors related to their intersecting identities and unique experiences. These factors can be categorized into three levels – individual (i.e., sexual and gender identities, mental health, and alcohol use), relationship (i.e., CNM structures, jealousy, CNM secrecy, relationship quality, and open communication), and external factors (i.e., sexual minority stress, CNM minority stress, and social support). Thus, the current study sought to 1) examine the prevalence of IPV in the past year, 2) investigate IPV-related risk and protective factors, and 3) examine the potential moderation effects of select protective factors on IPV risk in this sample. Participant and partner data were collected from a community sample of 230 CNM-partnered sexual minority adults. Multiple Logistic Regression Models and modified Actor-Partner Interdependence Models (APIMs) were used to assess within- and cross-relationship associations between aforementioned factors and IPV. Findings demonstrated a high prevalence of IPV in this sample, with IPV rates varying as a function of gender and relationship structure. All aforementioned risk factors were significantly associated with higher odds of IPV, while protective factors were associated with lower odds of IPV. Moderation effects of protective factors varied across types of minority stress and jealousy. Findings may provide clinical guidelines for the development of culturally-appropriate IPV interventions for CNM partners.


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Consensual nonmonogamy, Intimate partner violence, Sexual minority, Domestic violence