Why Might Women Justify Dating Violence? The Role of Men's Sexual Objectification of Their Romantic Partners Within Heterosexual Relationships.

Journal of interpersonal violence(2023)

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Men's partner-sexual objectification has been linked to increased self-objectification and diminished well-being in women. Some recent findings have also demonstrated that men's partner-sexual objectification is related to increased violence in the relationship. However, mechanisms driving this association remain unexplored. In the present research, we collected data on women and men involved in heterosexual romantic relationships and investigated the associations between men's partner-sexual objectification, women's self-objectification, and both partners' attitudes toward dating violence. Study 1 ( = 171 heterosexual couples) provided first evidence for the link between men's partner-sexual objectification and their attitudes toward dating violence. Furthermore, men's attitudes toward dating violence mediated the relationship between sexual objectification of their partners and women's attitudes toward dating violence. These results were replicated in Study 2 ( = 235 heterosexual couples). Findings of this study also revealed that, along with men's attitudes toward dating violence, women's self-objectification acted as a mediating mechanism linking experiences of being sexually objectified by the romantic partner and attitudes toward dating violence in women. Implications of our findings for the issue of dating violence are discussed.
dating violence,sexual objectification,romantic partners,relationships
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