This study investigates associations between (a) relationship satisfaction and intimate partner violence (IPV: psychological, physical, and sexual) and (b) observed couple communication behavior. Mixed-sex couples (N = 291) were recruited via random digit dialing. Partners completed the Quality of Marriage Index (Norton, 1983), the Revised Conflict Tactics Scale (Straus et al., 1996), and one female-initiated and one male-initiated 10-min conflict conversations. Discussions were coded with Rapid Marital Interaction Coding System, 2nd Generation (Heyman et al., 2015). As hypothesized, lower satisfaction was associated with more hostility (p =.018) and less positivity (p <.001); more extensive IPV was associated with more hostility (p <.001). For negative reciprocity, there was a dissatisfaction × IPV extent × conversation-initiator interaction (p <.006). Results showed that conflict behaviors of mixed-sex couples are related to the interplay among gender, satisfaction, and the severity of couple-level IPV. Theoretical and clinical implications are discussed.
- couple communication
- intimate partner violence
- relationship satisfaction
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Sciences (miscellaneous)