The Effects of Partner Aggression on Women's Work
Partner aggression , Work withdrawal
The purpose of this dissertation was to examine the relationship between partner aggression enacted against women and victims’ work withdrawal, as well as to investigate the possible moderators of this relationship. To accomplish this, I conducted three studies. The first two studies examined the effects of partner aggression on work withdrawal (i.e., cognitive distraction, neglect, partial absenteeism, frequency of absenteeism, and turnover intentions). The third study examined potential moderators (i.e., supervisor support, coworker support, mental respite, financial need, and partner interference in employment) of the relationship between partner aggression and work withdrawal. In the first study, full-time, post secondary female students in dating relationships (N = 122) reported on psychological aggression, school withdrawal, and performance (i.e., course grades). Multiple regression analyses showed that experiencing psychological aggression from one’s partner is related to cognitive distraction at school, school neglect, and grades but is not related to partial absenteeism, frequency of absenteeism, or thoughts of quitting school. In the second study, physically abused women (abused group; n = 19) were compared with maritally discordant, nonabused women (discordant-only group; n = 12) and a control group of maritally satisfied, nonabused women (control group; n = 19). Abused women reported significantly more cognitive distraction and job neglect compared to women in the control group. They also reported significantly more job neglect compared to women in the discordant-only group; women in the latter group reported more cognitive distraction compared to women in the control group. There were no differences among the groups in partial absenteeism, frequency of absenteeism, or thoughts of quitting work. In the final study, data were collected from a sample of 242 employed women who reported on physical aggression and employment withdrawal. The results revealed that supervisor support buffers the impact of physical aggression on frequency of absenteeism, and partner interference in employment exacerbates the impact of physical aggression on frequency of absenteeism. No other significant interactions were found. I conclude by discussing the theoretical and practical implications of these results, as well as potential directions for future research.