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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Cannabis use and perpetration of intimate partner violence : testing a spurious effects model Crosby, Kimberly Anne


This thesis examined the plausibility of a spurious effects model of the cannabis and intimate partner violence relationship in undergraduate students (Study 1), inpatients in a residential addictions treatment facility (Study 2), and discharged civil psychiatric patients (Study 3). The primary aim of the studies was to examine the cannabis-IPV association while accounting for problematic alcohol use and psychopathic personality traits. Using bootstrap procedures, the studies examined the independent association of cannabis with perpetration of physical assault and psychological aggression, accounting for problematic alcohol use and psychopathic personality. In general, across three studies, the results do not support a direct association between cannabis and perpetration of aggression against an intimate partner. Across all three studies, frequency of cannabis use was not related to perpetration of intimate partner violence. In Study 1, cannabis evinced a trend to be associated with perpetration of IPV; however this association was accounted by both problematic alcohol use and by psychopathic personality traits. In Study 2 and Study 3, cannabis demonstrated no univariate association or even a trend with perpetration of IPV, and no association when accounting for alcohol use and psychopathy, and spurious effects could not be investigated. Overall, the findings suggest potential partial support for the existence of a spurious-effects conceptualization of the relationship between cannabis and perpetration of IPV, and suggest further research is required to characterize the relationship in a variety of populations.

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