On the Pervasiveness of Event-Specific Alcohol Use, General Substance Use, and Mental Health Problems as Risk Factors for Intimate Partner Violence




Jennifer M. Reingle, PhD, Wesley G. Jennings, PhD, Nadine M. Connell, PhD, Michael S. Businelle, PhD,

Karen Chartier, PhD

Journal of Interpersonal Violence

November 2014







The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of demographic, mental health, and substance use as risk factors for intimate partner violence (IPV). Data were derived from Wave II of the National Epidemiological Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (2004-2005). Eligible participants (N = 25,778) reported having an intimate partner 1 year before the survey. Clustered survey multivariate multinomial regression methods were used to assess risk factors for episodes of IPV. IPV victimization, perpetration, and both victims/perpetrators were assessed. Bivariate analyses indicated that African Americans, Hispanics, and women were more likely to be victims, perpetrators, or victim/perpetrators as compared with men and Whites. Multivariate analyses suggested that having a marijuana use disorder was strongly associated with IPV victimization (odds ratio [OR] = 2.61) and victim/perpetration (OR = 2.65). Post-traumatic stress disorder was consistently associated with all IPV typologies. Depression was associated with victimization (OR = 2.00) and IPV victim/perpetration (OR = 1.74). Antisocial Personality Disorder and Mania were both related to IPV perpetration (ORs = 2.53 and 2.32) and victim/perpetration (ORs = 3.15 and 2.31). Results also indicated that alcohol use during episodes of IPV is common (i.e., 35% of those who reported IPV also reported that alcohol was involved). Results indicate several substance- and mental health–related correlates of IPV. In addition, findings indicate that alcohol use by the victim and/or perpetrator is common during IPV events. Policy implications and directions for future research are discussed.








Human Services and Justice Coordinating Committee