Maternal experiences of childhood abuse and intimate partner violence: Psychopathology and functional impairment in clinical children and adolescents
These authors examined the independent effects of mothers' childhood abuse (CA) and intimate partner violence (IPV) on psychopathology and functional impairment in children, and the moderating and mediating roles of individual and family factors in these relationships. They also explored the potential cumulative effects of both maternal CA and IPV on children's outcomes. The sample included 547 Spanish children and adolescents (ages 8 to 17 years) and their parents, who were recruited from outpatient psychiatric settings. Children whose mothers experienced CA and those whose mothers suffered physical IPV showed increased DSM-IV disruptive disorders and externalizing behavior problems, respectively. Children who directly observed physical IPV and also suffered physical punishment by parents showed increased internalizing problems. IPV had effects, either direct or indirect by physical punishment, on children's externalizing problems. Cumulative effect analyses indicated that the prevalence of disruptive disorders was highest in children whose mothers had suffered both CA and IPV. These findings suggest targets of assessment and intervention for families seeking help in mental health services. Modified Author Abstract.