Date of Conferral

2017

Degree

Ph.D.

School

Psychology

Advisor

Sandra Caramela-Miller

Abstract

Intimate partner violence is negatively impacting the military community. This social issue is not understood well enough to create effective prevention programs or improve intervention programs. Missing from the literature is research investigating the complex nature of intimate partner violence using attachment as the framework. The purpose behind this quantitative, cross-sectional study was to understand the relationships between attachment styles, posttraumatic stress disorder, and intimate partner violence. Whether traumatic brain injury mediates these relationships was considered. There were 228 surveys collected from military couples, using the Adult Attachment Scale, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Checklistâ??Military Version, and Intimate Justice Scale. Traumatic brain injury diagnoses were self-reported. These data were analyzed using a factorial analysis of variance to understand the relationships between and among the variables. The main effect for attachment and interaction effects for attachment and posttraumatic stress disorder were statistically significant. The way in which attachment styles and posttraumatic stress symptoms interact, together and separately, were significant influences on violence risk. A linear regression using the mediator function was conducted to determine the impact of traumatic brain injury on any significant relationships. The significant relationships found within the factorial analysis were not influenced by traumatic brain injury. Positive social change implications include improving practitioners' knowledge base on violence within military couples by focusing on altering attachment styles, possibly lowering intimate partner violence rates. The military could be strengthened by creating more resilient soldiers with healthier families

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