Investigators from El Centro have documented the co-occurrence of IPV and other conditions. For example, women who had a history of having a sexually transmitted infection (STI) were 6 times more likely to report IPV victimization from a current partner.
Behavioral and mental health conditions are commonly seen in victims of IPV. This co-occurrence is more likely to be observed in women who are socioeconomically disadvantaged or who have a high degree of stress.
Women who are victims of IPV and who are also HIV+ report higher levels of drug use and depression than victims of IPV who are not HIV+, as well as women who are HIV+ but who are not victims of IPV.
IPV is also related to sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and substance abuse. People who are the perpetrators of IPV (the abusers) are more likely to report substance abuse than non-perpetrators.
Women who are depressed are more likely to become victims of IPV. At the same time, women who are not depressed but who become victims of IPV are more likely to become depressed.
Women who drink heavily and who use illicit drugs are more likely to become victims of IPV.
Women who are victims of IPV are more likely to engage in risky sexual behaviors including having sex with an injection drug user, having unprotected anal sex, and having multiple sexual partners.
What other factors place women at risk for becoming victims of IPV?
Socioeconomic inequalities have been identified as risk factors for IPV in both the general population and among Hispanics.
The relationship between socioeconomic factors and IPV differ according to race and ethnicity. For example, Hispanics who have lower household and individual income and lower educational attainment may be at greater risk for becoming victims of IPV.
What factors can help to protect women from becoming victims of IPV?
Having strong, positive ties with family members can help to protect women from some of the negative consequences of IPV.
Self-esteem is the attitude that a woman has toward herself, whether favorable or unfavorable. A strong, positive sense of self-esteem can help to protect women from IPV and depression. However, because perpetrators of IPV emotionally abuse their victims, it is not known whether self-esteem is a predictor of IPV, an outcome of the abuse, or both. Some studies have supported the relationship between self-esteem, mental health and IPV outcomes.
One study of Mexican women looked at factors associated with depression. The authors found that women who had a strong sense of mastery, life satisfaction, and resilience were less likely to be depressed. The same study found that external factors, such as adequacy of financial resources, also helped to protect women against depression. Because depression is so closely linked to IPV, factors that help to protect women from becoming depressed may also serve to protect them from becoming victims of IPV.