2013-05-27Zeitschriftenartikel DOI: 10.1007/s00103-013-1691-8
Physical and psychological violence perpetration and violent victimisation in the German adult population
Results of the German Health Interview and Examination Survey for Adults (DEGS1)
Violence is of considerable relevance to Public Health. It was the aim of the violence screening implemented as part of the German Health Interview and Examination Survey for Adults (DEGS1) to assess data on physical and psychological violence in various social environments (partnership, family, workplace, public space). For the first time as part of a nationally representative health survey, the data were collected from the perspective of victim and perpetrator both among women and men. The study population was comprised of 5,939 participants aged between 18 and 64 years. Approximately every 20th participant reported being the victim of physical violence in the preceding 12 months, men significantly more frequently than women. With regard to the frequency of being the perpetrator of physical violence (overall prevalence 3.7%) there were no significant differences between the sexes. Psychological victimisation was reported by every fifth participant and overall perpetrating psychological violence was reported by every tenth. Women tended to be more frequently the victims but they were also significantly more frequently the perpetrators of both physical and psychological violence in the domestic area (partnership, family). In contrast, men more frequently reported being both the perpetrator and the victim of violence in the workplace and in public spaces. Young adults between 18 and 29 years as well as persons of low socioeconomic status were consistently more frequently affected by violence although there were exceptions with regard to psychological victimisation. More than three-quarters of the victims of physical violence reported being greatly or extremely affected in their well-being by the violence and in the case of psychological violence the rate was about approximately 60%. Impairments in well-being following physical and psychological violence were considerably higher in men, especially in the case of domestic violence (partnership, family). Overall, women reported a greater sense of wrongdoing following violence perpetration than men; as to the perpetration of violence towards a partner, however, there was no difference between the sexes in this regard.
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