The impact of emotional and physical violence during pregnancy on maternal and child health at one year post-partum

Publication year: 2011
Source: Children and Youth Services Review, In Press, Accepted Manuscript, Available online 13 June 2011

Sarah, McMahon , Chien-Chung, Huang , Paul, Boxer , Judy L., Postmus

Intimate partner violence (IPV) during pregnancy is increasingly recognized as having a negative impact on both the mother and her unborn child. The current study extends previous work to examine the impact of both physical and emotional IPV separately and cumulatively on the mother and her child. Specifically, we used the Fragile Families dataset (N=3,961) to determine the effect of emotional and physical IPV on women and children at one year postpartum. Analyses revealed that both physical and emotional victimization have independent and negative impacts on mothers and their children. Emotional victimization was associated with poorer overall health for the…

 Highlights: ► A large number of women experience physical and emotional victimization during pregnancy. ► Both physical and emotional victimization have a negative impact on the mother and child at one year postpartum. ► Emotional victimization was associated with poor outcomes in all four areas under study (mother’s overall health, mother’s depression, child’s overall health, and child’s temperament). ► The combination of physical and emotional victimization resulted in more negative outcomes.