Co-Occurrence of Interparental Violence and Child Physical Abuse and its Effect on the Adolescent's Behavior

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Journal of Family Violence, Volume 22, Issue 8, pp. 691 - 701

This study surveyed Francophone teenagers in New Brunswick secondary schools to determine the impact of the co-occurrence of parent-to-child and interparental violence on their behavior. Results showed that half of all the teens who responded to the questionnaire had been exposed at least once to domestic violence within the past five years, and nearly a third had been physically abused by a parent. The co-occurrence of interparental violence and child physical abuse had a significantly greater negative impact on behavior than exposure to interparental violence only. Participants who were both abused and exposed to interparental violence exhibited internalized and externalized symptoms falling within the clinical range more frequently. Exposure to interparental violence alone also had negative impact. For example, teens who were exposed to spousal violence exhibited internalized and externalized symptoms more frequently than those who were not exposed to either physical abuse or domestic violence.

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