Self-perceived risk of HIV among women with protective orders against male partners

Jennifer Cole, T. K. Logan, Lisa Shannon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Previous research indicates that many individuals who perceive themselves to be at no risk of HIV have recently engaged in risky sexual behaviors (Klein et al., 2003; Schroder et al., 2001). Because HIV risk has been associated with partner violence (Maman et al., 2000), it is important to examine self-perceived risk and actual sexual risk behaviors among partner violence victims. Findings are from a study of adult women (N = 569) who were recruited from courts after they had obtained a protective order against a male intimate partner. Two groups were developed on the basis of self-reported perceptions of risk of HIV at the time of the interview (n = 341, no chance; n - 228, some to high chance). Three main findings from this study are discussed: (1) The number of sexual partners and illicit drug use were associated with women's self-perceived risk of HIV; (2) sexual behaviors within the relationship with the abusive partner were not associated with self-perceived risk; and (3) severity of physical violence and frequency of threatened or forced sex in the abusive relationship were not associated with self-perceived risk of HIV. Implications for social work practice are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-298
Number of pages12
JournalHealth and Social Work
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2008


  • Abusive partner
  • Domestic violence
  • Heterosexual
  • Risky sexual behavior

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)


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