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Access Type

WSU Access

Date of Award

January 2012

Degree Type


Degree Name



Social Work

First Advisor

Arlene Weisz


This thesis examines the connection between exposure to physical domestic violence (DV) in childhood and parenting outcomes in adulthood. By examining the relationship between DV and parenting, this thesis will determine whether exposure has an affect on the discipline practices and play behaviors between the parent and their child.

A quantitative cross-sectional questionnaire was presented to 398 participants throughout the United States through advertisement on social networking web sites, e-mail and flyer postings. The questionnaire examined the family history of violence and abuse, current family life demographics, the participants discipline practices play behaviors with their children, and the physical and mental health of the participants. Data was collected and analyzed through IBM SPSS software where it was determined that while exposure to DV in childhood was a predictor of adverse discipline practices in adulthood, it was not a predictor for adverse play behaviors with children in adulthood. The study did show a correlation between other factors, such as depression and PTSD from childhood events that were connected to adverse parenting outcomes.

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