Family Variables that Mediate the Relation Between Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) and Child Adjustment
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- Owen, A.E., Thompson, M.P., Shaffer, A. et al. J Fam Viol (2009) 24: 433. doi:10.1007/s10896-009-9239-2
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This study examined the mediating roles of several family variables in the relation between IPV witnessing and children’s emotional and behavioral problems among 129 low-income, African American children ages 8 to 12. According to the mediational model tested, experiencing or witnessing IPV negatively impacted the following family variables: maternal psychopathology, family cohesion, and relatedness quality, which were subsequently associated with diminished child adjustment. These findings were stronger when child reports were considered and when the outcome variable was internalizing problems. Findings from this study support the value of targeting these variables in the development of culturally appropriate child witness interventions for low-income African American families. Recommendations for future interventions based on study conclusions are offered.