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date: 20 October 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Aggression and coercive behaviors in the form of physical assaults, psychological aggression, and sexual coercion—often referred to as intimate partner violence (IPV)—are highly prevalent in couples during early adulthood (ages 18 through 29 years). Although such IPV has long been recognized as a major public health problem, the existing intervention programs have shown limited effects. Since the late 1990s researchers have sought to identify more nuanced developmental pathways and interactional processes of IPV in young couples in order to better inform prevention and intervention efforts. This chapter first discusses characteristics of IPV in early adulthood and then outlines key assumptions of the dynamic developmental systems model, an extension of coercion theory, as a framework for understanding the development of IPV. It then provides relevant empirical findings from the Oregon Youth Study–Couples Study. We also discuss clinical implications of the findings from our work.

Keywords: aggression, coercive behavior, intimate partner violence, early adult, relationship

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