Survey: 1 in 4 women attacked by intimate partner

December 14, 2011
Chart shows violence against women by intimate partners

(AP) -- It's a startling number: 1 in 4 women surveyed by the government say they were violently attacked by their husbands or boyfriends.

Experts in domestic don't find it too surprising, although some aspects of the survey may have led to higher numbers than are sometimes reported.

Even so, a government official who oversaw the research called the results "astounding."

"It's the first time we've had this kind of estimate" on the prevalence of , said Linda Degutis of the .

The survey, released by the Wednesday, marks the beginning of a new annual project to look at how many say they've been abused.

One expert called the new report's estimate on rape and attempted rape "extremely high" - with 1 in 5 women saying they were victims. About half of those cases involved intimate partners. No documentation was sought to verify the women's claims, which were made anonymously.

But advocates say the new rape numbers are plausible.

"It's a major problem that often is under-estimated and over-looked," said Linda James, director of health for Futures Without Violence, a San Francisco-based organization that advocates against .

The CDC report is based on a randomized telephone survey of about 9,000 women and 7,400 men.

Among the findings:

- As many as 29 million women say they have suffered severe and frightening from a boyfriend, spouse or other intimate partner. That includes being choked, beaten, stabbed, shot, punched, slammed against something or hurt by hair-pulling.

- That number grows to 36 million if slapping, pushing and shoving are counted.

- Almost half of the women who reported rape or attempted rape said it happened when they were 17 or younger.

-As many as 1 in 3 women have experienced rape, physical violence or stalking by an in their lifetimes, compared to about 1 in 10 men.

-Both men and women who had been menaced or attacked in these ways reported more health problems. Female victims, in particular, had significantly higher rates of irritable bowel syndrome, asthma, frequent headaches and difficulty sleeping.

-Certain states seemed to have higher reports of sexual violence than others. Alaska, Oregon and Nevada were among the highest in rapes and attempted rapes of women, and Virginia and Tennessee were among the lowest.

Several of the CDC numbers are higher than those of other sources. For example, the CDC study suggests that 1.3 million women have suffered rape, attempted rape or had sex forced on them in the previous year. That statistic is more than seven times greater than what was reported by a Department of Justice household survey conducted last year.

The CDC rape numbers seem "extremely high," but there may be several reasons for the differences, including how the surveys were done, who chose to participate and how "" and other types of assault were defined or interpreted, said Shannan Catalano, a statistician with the Bureau of Justice Statistics.

"It is an evolving field, and everyone is striving to get a handle on what's the best estimate," Catalano said.

The CDC's numbers don't seem surprising to people who work with abused women.

"I think that the awareness is growing," said Kim Frndak, community educator for the Women's Rescue Center to End Domestic Violence, which operates a shelter on the outskirts of Atlanta.

"More and more people are really saying, `Oh, this is something that we need to pay attention to as well,' because it's your sister, it's your mother, it's your daughter, it's your son, it's your brother. Someone in your own circle is being affected by , and the effects can be devastating," she said.

Explore further: Men with disabilities 4 times more likely to be sexually abused than men without disabilities

More information: CDC report: www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/nisvs/

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Nanobanano
not rated yet Dec 14, 2011
Maybe they should do an anonymous survey of men asking how many have been FALSELY accused of rape, stalking, or harrassment...

wouldn't be surprised if it was more than 1 in 4.

Lately, the court of Nancy Grace has made every guy guilty until proven innocent.

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