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Psicologia, Saúde & Doenças

Print version ISSN 1645-0086


PAIVA, Carla  and  FIGUEIREDO, Bárbara. Abuse in the context of intimate partner relationship: definition, prevalence, causes and effects. Psic., Saúde & Doenças [online]. 2003, vol.4, n.2, pp.165-184. ISSN 1645-0086.

This article refers to abuse phenomena in the context of intimate relationship with a partner. It presents a definition of the different kinds of abuse - physical abuse, sexual abuse, and psychological abuse - and the prevalence they have been reported in several countries. It shows the possible causes of abuse, conceptualized attending specifically to attachment theory, which emphasizes the impact of the quality of significant relationships during childhood, and particularly the impact of abusive circumstances on the construction of "internal working models", whose interferes on the quality of the relationship with a partner in adulthood. It makes reference also to the effects of abuse experiences in the scope of intimate relationships on physical and mental health of individuals, strengthening the importance of the quality of interpersonal significant relationships on health and well being of individuals during adulthood.

Keywords : Health; Intimate relationships; Physical abuse; Psychological abuse; Sexual abuse.

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