Consequences of intimacy and violence in the couple relationships of Romanian youth on the future life plans

Cristina Faludi, Babes-Bolyai University

The aim of the paper is to investigate the connections between the levels of intimacy and violence within the current couple relationship, and the plans related to personal development in the near future among Romanian youth. We assume that a strong intimacy encourages the plans for personal achievement, while elements of violence in couple discourages the partners to assume adult roles in the personal life. We used data from the second wave of the online self-administered Outcome of Adolescence Questionnaire, completed by a total sample of 1509 Romanian young people, during October 2014 and February 2015. We selected only respondents having a current romantic partner at the moment of inquiry; consequently, analysis were applied to 836 young people. The age range is 19 to 23 years, and 66% are female. About 90% of participants having a partner were sexually active, and 60% were in partnership for more than a year. Preliminary descriptive and inferential analysis were implemented. Almost 80% of respondents reported jealousy in couple and over 40% addressed insulting words to each other. Being harmed by the partner was reported by 8% of respondents, and 82% experienced at least one type of violence in couple. A longer relationship accentuates the perception of intimacy, but paradoxically, intensify violent behaviours. Females reported higher levels of intimacy, while males, paradoxically, declared more being a victim of violence in couple. Intimacy and violence in couple produce the strongest effects regarding separation in the expected way, but do not influence intention to move with the partner. Higher levels of intimacy predict the intentions to get married and to have a child, while violence in couple make no difference in such plans. Effects on future plans are stronger among females. Implications for public health and educational policies are discussed in the end of the paper.

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Presented in Session 96: Gender issues in sexual and reproductive health