Intimate Partner Violence and the Victim-Offender Overlap

Marie Skubak Tillyer, Emily M. Wright

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Scopus citations


Objectives: Examine the prevalence and correlates of intimate partner violence (IPV) victimization and offending, as well as the overlap of these experiences. Method: Data from wave 4 of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health were analyzed to examine IPV among adults ages 24 to 33. A multinomial logistic regression model was estimated to determine whether the correlates of IPV vary across victims, perpetrators, and victim-perpetrators. Results: Approximately 20% of respondents reported some IPV involvement in the past year, one-third of whom reported victimization and perpetration. The victim-offender overlap was observed for males and females across various measures of IPV. Bivariate correlations suggest victimization and perpetration have common correlates. Multivariate analysis, however, reveals considerable differences once we distinguish between victims, offenders, and victim-offenders and control for other variables. Perpetrators and victim-perpetrators were more likely to live with a nonspouse partner; feel isolated; display negative temperaments; and report substance use problems. "Victims only" were more likely to live with children and have lower household incomes. Conclusions: The victim-offender overlap exists for IPV across a variety of measures. Though perpetrators and victim-perpetrators have similar characteristics, those who are victims only appear distinctly different. We discuss the implications for theory, policy, and research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)29-55
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Research in Crime and Delinquency
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2014


  • intimate partner violence
  • victim-offender overlap

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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