Date of Award

2011

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.Sc.

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Timmons-Fritz, Patti (Psychology)

Keywords

Psychology.

Rights

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Abstract

Recently, Canadians have reported an increase in the prevalence of dating violence, with adolescent girls reporting 10 times the amount of victimization reported by boys (Mahony, 2010). Studies exploring the relation between age of sexual debut and dating violence have shown that an early age at first intercourse significantly predicts victimization, but the research on this association is limited and warrants replication. Additionally, insecure attachment has been independently linked to both dating violence victimization and an early age at first intercourse, but no study to date has examined the relations between all three variables. This study extended the literature on dating violence by exploring the relations between attachment style, age of sexual debut, and dating violence victimization. Anxious attachment and age of sexual debut were significantly correlated with victimization; however, they did not predict victimization above and beyond control variables. Future directions and practical implications are discussed.

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