Ethnic specific perceptions about pregnancy as related to abuse status and their application to clinical identification of abused women
Greenberg, Edythe Madelyn
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This study was a secondary data analysis of a prospective cohort study designed to investigate abuse during pregnancy. A triangulated design was used to investigate the association between an ethnic specific topology of feelings and abuse status on a woman's first prenatal visit. Abuse was defined as a positive response to questions on an Abuse Assessment Screen measuring physical or sexual abuse during the 12 months prior to the pregnancy or during the present pregnancy. Four perception themes--happiness, acceptance, ambivalence, and expressions of being upset--were derived from a qualitative instrument of two open-ended questions asking about the woman's perceptions and her perceptions of her male partner's feelings about the pregnancy. Approximately 454 black, hispanic, and anglo women's scores on the Conflict Tactics Scale, Index of Spouse Abuse-physical (ISAP), and Danger Assessment were associated with the four perception themes. Abused women who were accepting, ambivalent, or upset about the pregnancy scored higher on severe violence and I SAP than nonabused women and abused women who were happy about their pregnancy. Abused anglo women scored higher on Danger Assessment, Verbal Aggression, and ISAP than abused black and hispanic women. Abused anglo women who were upset or ambivalent about the pregnancy scored higher on verbal aggression and minor violence than abused anglo women who were happy about the pregnancy. Abused black women scored higher on minor violence than abused hispanic and anglo women. Abused black women who accepted their pregnancy scored higher on minor violence than abused black women who were happy. Abused women who perceived their male partners as being upset about the pregnancy scored higher on minor violence and danger assessment than abused women who perceived their male partners as being happy. Abused black women who perceived their male partners as being ambivalent scored higher on severe violence than abused hispanic and anglo women. Abused anglo and hispanic women who perceived their male partner as being upset scored higher on their ISAP scores than abused anglo and hispanic women who perceived their male partner as being happy or accepting of the pregnancy.