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Children Witnessing Domestic Violence: What Affects Their Well-Being Over Time?  

Author:  Cris M.  Sullivan, Ph.D..; Deborah I.  Bybee, Ph.D..

Source: Volume 04, Number 04, Spring 2012 , pp.295-302(8)

Family & Intimate Partner Violence Quarterly

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Here, authoritative researchers Cris M. Sullivan and Deborah I. Bybee present findings that fly in the face of a common misconception about battered women: that living with abuse makes them likely to neglect or abuse their children. Of course, it’s safe to say that raising healthy children while living with a batterer is like trying to grow a vegetable garden in the midst of a snowstorm while the ground is still frozen; the right conditions simply aren’t present. Yet, as O’Sullivan and Bybee point out, the assumption that battered women don’t parent well isn’t held up by the data. To the contrary; they find that despite having to parent under siege-like conditions, battered women do an admirable job of nurturing and protecting their children. How much better a job would battered mothers do if they were to receive the support and legal protections they deserve from the systems designated to serve these purposes?

Keywords: Conduct disorders, psycho-emotional problems, low social competence, problem-solving and social skills, poor academic performance, role-relationship

Affiliations:  1: Michigan State University; 2: Michigan State University.

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