Modeling the intergenerational impact of partner abuse on maternal and child function at 24 months post outreach: Implications for practice and policy.

Research paper by Nina N Fredland, Judith J McFarlane, Lene L Symes, John J Maddoux, Jacquelyn J Pennings, Rene R Paulson, Brenda B Binder, Heidi H Gilroy

Indexed on: 15 Dec '15Published on: 15 Dec '15Published in: Nursing Outlook


Many women are exposed to partner violence during their lifetime which affects mental health and child development. This study revalidates an intergenerational model connecting partner violence to poor functioning for mothers and children using structural equation techniques.A longitudinal design collected data on 300 mother-child pairs. Comparisons between the model, tested at study entry and again at 24 months, are reported. Maternal measures included childhood experiences of abuse, partner abuse, chronic pain, and mental health. The Child Behavior Checklist measured child function.Comparison of both models revealed that maternal chronic pain, maternal mental health, and child witnessing of mother's abuse remain strong predictors of child dysfunction. Maternal social support and self-efficacy are significant predictors of more positive maternal mental health with a conduit effect on child behavior.Intimate partner violence directly impacts the victim and also has a secondary impact on the children of abuse victims.