Journal of Family Violence

, Volume 26, Issue 2, pp 81–92 | Cite as

The Status and Characteristics of Couple Violence in China

  • Juan Hou
  • Li Yu
  • Siu-Man Raymond Ting
  • Yee Tak Sze
  • Xiaoyi Fang
Original Article


A couple’s relationship is very important to marital well-being as well as the harmony of family and society. Violent behaviors in marriage have bad effects on people’s physical and mental health and cause large social burdens. In this study, we investigated 194 couples in Beijing to explore the status and characteristics of couple violence from three aspects by using Revised Conflict Tactics Scale (CTS2). We conclude that: (1) Couple violence is universal, although the frequency is not so high. Prevalence and frequency of psychological violence are higher than physical and sexual violence; rate of wives’ victimization is significantly higher than that of husbands; frequency of the perpetration of sexual violence by husbands is significantly higher than that by wives. (2) There is concurrence of different types of couple violence. Specifically, physical and sexual violence are usually accompanied by psychological violence; however, psychological violence exists independently. (3) Couple violence is often bidirectional, especially in psychological violence. (4) Marital length is negatively correlated to wives’ perpetration of physical violence and their victimization of sexual violence.


Couple violence Physical violence Psychological violence Sexual violence 



The Revised Conflict Tactics Scale was provided by Prof. Norman Epstein at University of Maryland, College Park.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juan Hou
    • 1
  • Li Yu
    • 2
  • Siu-Man Raymond Ting
    • 3
  • Yee Tak Sze
    • 1
  • Xiaoyi Fang
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Developmental PsychologyBeijing Normal UniversityBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Beijing No. 5 Middle SchoolBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Department of Curriculum and Instruction and Counselor EducationNorth Carolina State UniversityRaleighUSA

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