The role of parental stress, mother’s childhood abuse and perceived consequences of violence in predicting attitudes and attribution in favor of corporal punishment

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Journal of Child & Family Studies, Volume 18, Number 2, pp. 163-171.

We investigate maternal attitudes toward corporal punishment and the attribution of blame to the child on the basis of data gathered from a population survey of a representative sample of mothers and mother figures. A total of 3,148 women living at least half of the time with a child participated in a telephone survey. The independent variables included in the multivariate model predicting maternal attitudes and attributions include the child’s, the mother’s and the family’s characteristics and social support. Results of the multiple regression analysis demonstrate the unique contribution of variables according to the mother’s characteristics (mother’s sensitivity to the consequences of violence, mother’s experience of childhood violence and parental stress related to child’s temperament). These results partially support the importance of prevention programs that would reduce stress and increase the level of parental empathy through the means of parental training

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