Intimate partner violence among men and women who use methamphetamine: A mixed-methods study in South Africa.
INTRODUCTION: The prevalence of methamphetamine use has risen dramatically in parts of South Africa. Globally, methamphetamine has been linked to intimate partner violence (IPV) and other forms of aggression. The aim of this mixed-methods study was to examine the experiences of physical IPV and its contextual factors among methamphetamine users in an urban community in Cape Town, South Africa. METHODS: Active methamphetamine users were recruited using respondent driven sampling. All participants (n = 360) completed structured surveys, and a subset (n = 30) completed in-depth interviews with discussions of personal IPV experiences. Quantitative data were examined separately by gender, and regression models were used to identify factors that were associated with physical IPV victimisation and perpetration. Qualitative data were analysed to provide contextual understanding. RESULTS: In the past 3 months, 47% of women and 31% of men reported being a victim of IPV, and 30% of women and 28% men reported being a perpetrator of IPV. Victimisation and perpetration were highly correlated, and both were significantly associated with histories of other traumas. Although the survey data suggests gender equivalence in IPV, the qualitative data provides a more nuanced context, with female victimisation by male partners being particularly frequent and intense. In narratives, IPV was a product of male aggression while using methamphetamine, norms around sex trading and gender-based attitudes endorsing violence against women. CONCLUSION: Addiction to methamphetamine creates heightened risks of IPV, especially among those with previous traumas. The findings emphasise the importance of identifying and addressing IPV among methamphetamine users in South Africa. [Watt MH, Guidera KE, Hobkirk AL, Skinner D, Meade CS. Intimate partner violence among men and women who use methamphetamine: A mixed-methods study in South Africa. Drug Alcohol Rev 2017;36:97-106].
Watt, MH; Guidera, KE; Hobkirk, AL; Skinner, D; Meade, CS
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