Violence linked to birth control sabotage

Jan. 25, 2010 at 4:00 PM
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DAVIS, Calif., Jan. 25 (UPI) -- Women and teenage girls face efforts by some male partners to sabotage birth control or coerce pregnancy, including damaging condoms, U.S. researchers say.

The study, published in the journal Contraception, found 35 percent of women who reported partner violence also reported either pregnancy coercion or birth control sabotage including damaging condoms and destroying contraceptives.

The team of researchers led by University of California, Davis, found approximately one in five young women said they experienced pregnancy coercion -- and 15 percent said they experienced birth control sabotage. In addition, 53 percent said they had experienced physical or sexual violence from an intimate partner.

The study was conducted from August 2008 and March 2009 at five reproductive health clinics in Northern California. The study involved approximately 1,300 English- and Spanish-speaking 16- to 29-year-old women who agreed to respond to a computerized survey about their experiences with relationships and pregnancy.

"This study highlights an under-recognized phenomenon where male partners actively attempt to promote pregnancy against the will of their female partners," lead author Elizabeth Miller, an assistant professor of pediatrics in the UC Davis School of Medicine, said in a statement.

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