Date of Award

5-8-2004

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Degree Program

Psychology

Department

Psychology

Major Professor

Weems, Carl

Second Advisor

Morris, Amanda

Third Advisor

Stamps, Leighton

Fourth Advisor

Scheeringa, Michael

Fifth Advisor

Frick, Paul

Abstract

This study examined the link between interparental violence and children's functioning. The goal of the study was to examine an indirect pathway of the effect of interparental violence on children's internalizing and externalizing problems. The data for the study was drawn from The Women and Family Project and included 359 women and one of their children between the ages of 5 and 12-years-old. Sixty-four of these women resided in a battered women's shelter, 100 of these women resided in the community but had a history of interparental violence, and 195 of these women were recruited as a comparison sample. Interparental violence, maternal parenting practices, maternal depression, and children's internalizing and externalizing problems were assessed via interviews with mothers and their children. An indirect pathway hypothesis of the effects of interparental violence which posits that interparental violence leads to maternal depression, maternal depression leads to maternal use of maladaptive parenting practices, and maternal maladaptive parenting practices lead to children's internalizing and externalizing problems was tested using structural equation modeling. This new model of the indirect effects of interparental violence was supported by the results of the structural equation models when tested on the sample as a whole as well as separately for the battered and nonbattered sample. A second indirect pathway, though, was more strongly supported. This second model indicates that interparental violence affects children through maternal depression, which is directly related to children's internalizing and externalizing problems. The results of the present study support the importance of indirect pathways of the effects of interparental violence on children.

Rights

The University of New Orleans and its agents retain the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible this dissertation or thesis in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. The author retains all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis or dissertation.

Share

COinS