Parenting and Women Arrested for Intimate Partner Violence

Simmons, C. A.,
Lehmann, P.,
Dia, D. A.
Journal Article
Year Published: 2010
Sage Publication
Journal of Interpersonal Violence 25(8); 1429-1448: 2010
University of Tennessee, Memphis

In this study, the authors first examined parenting beliefs, including use of discipline and locus of control, in a group of mothers who were arrested for interpersonal violence (IPV) against their male partner. Then, to investigate whether the spillover theory is relevant to women IPV offenders, they explored the relationship between parenting styles and beliefs about justification for using violence against one's intimate partner. The sample consisted of 106 mothers who had children living at home at the time of arrest for an IPV-related crime. For the majority of these women, parenting styles were indicative of low belief in using physical discipline with their child/children, and most had an internal parental locus of control. There was a moderate to weak relationship between parenting styles and justification for using violence against a partner. Although some support for the spillover theory was found, the authors say the results are far from conclusive. Modified Author Abstract.

Correspondence to: Catherine A. Simmons, University of Tennessee, College of Social Work, 711 Jefferson Street, Room E605B, Memphis, TN 38163; E-mail: <>; Website:
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