According to the Centers for Disease Control, in the United States 4.8 million women suffer intimate partner related physical assaults and rapes and 2.9 million men are victims of physical assault from their partners. Fiebert, shows that women are as likely to be abusive to men, but that men are less likely to be hurt.
However, he noted, men are seriously injured in 38 percent of the cases in which "extreme aggression" is used.
When comparing the African American population to European Americans by socio-economic class, the rates of domestic violence are roughly the same.
Since there are more poor African Americans, though, there is a higher incidence of domestic violence overall.
These surveys are conducted within a safety or crime context and clearly find more partner abuse by men against women.
Women are more likely than men to be murdered by an intimate partner.
Many scholarly studies of the problem have stated that is often part of a dynamic of control and oppression in relationships, regularly involving multiple forms of physical and non-physical abuse taking place concurrently.
Intimate terrorism, an ongoing, complicated use of control, power and abuse in which one person tries to assert systematic control over another psychologically.
The study, which was based on interviews with 1,615 married or cohabiting couples and extrapolated nationally using census data, found that 21 percent of couples reported domestic violence.
However, one of the report's authors, Renee Mc Donald, who was interviewed by The Washington Times cautioned, "We don't want to minimize [female-to-male violence], but on the other hand we don't want to forget the fact that men can be much more harmful to women." The National Institute of Justice contends that national surveys supported by NIJ, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Bureau of Justice Statistics that examine more serious assaults do not support the conclusion of similar rates of male and female spousal assaults.
The levels of dating violence against men has not been investigated to the same extent.
According to the Centers for Disease Control National Intimate Partner Violence Survey results of 2010, 1 in 6 women (15.2%) have been stalked during their lifetime, compared to 1 in 19 men (5.7%).
The US Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) defines domestic violence as a "pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner".