Polyvictimization by dating partners and mental health among U.S. college students

Chiara Sabina, Murray A. Straus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

140 Scopus citations


Studies on mental health effects of partner violence often ignore multiple victimizations or polyvictimization. The current study had several objectives: (a) examine the rate of physical, psychological, and sexual victimization and combinations of them (polyvictimization) among a sample of students at 19 U.S. colleges; (b) examine the association between victimization and depressive symptoms and posttraumatic stress (PTS) symptoms; and (c) examine the relation of polyvictimization to these mental health effects. A substantial number were polyvictims. As predicted, polyvictimization in almost all analyses was the strongest predictor of PTS symptoms for both men and women. Polyvictimization was a significant predictor of depressive symptoms for women. These findings highlight the importance of including polyvictimization in future work on the mental health effects of partner violence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)667-682
Number of pages16
JournalViolence and victims
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Health(social science)
  • Law


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