Examining Stability and Change in Types of Intimate Partner Violence prior to, during, and after Pregnancy: A Latent Transition Analysis
Ceylan Cizmeli, State University of New York at Oswego (SUNY)
Marci Lobel, Stony Brook University, State University of New York (SUNY)
Audrey Saftlas, University of Iowa
Intimate partner violence (IPV) against women of reproductive age is a global health problem. For many abused women, prenatal care is the only contact point with health care providers and a window of opportunity for screening and intervention. However, little is known about patterns of IPV prior to, during, and after pregnancy. The present study examined stability and change in occurrences of sexual and physical IPV across pre-pregnancy, pregnancy, and postpartum in a sample of 2,709 diverse women who gave birth within the last 6 months. Latent transition analyses identified three classes of women: those who experienced No IPV, Predominantly Sexual IPV, or Physical IPV Only. Violence in one period increased the likelihood of violence in subsequent periods. Change in IPV type was explained by individual and contextual factors including the pregnancy intendedness of women and of their partners. Findings underscore the value of routine IPV screening in prenatal care.