Source: (2007) In John Hamel and Tonia L. Nicholls, Ed., Family Interventions in Domestic Violence. New York, USA: Springer Publishing Company. Pp. 541-560.
“…This begins with redefining domestic violence and then reevaluating its players. Until recently, little attention was given to its impact on child development. The definition of and the response to family violence for the most part excluded children. Unfortunately, professionals are now finding a correlation between witnessing violence and subsequent behavioral problems, suggesting that the severe conflict between parents significantly impacts children’s physical, emotional, and social development (see chapter 8, this volume). Some researchers now believe that witnessing physical and other forms of abuse against a parent may in some cases be more devastating than experiencing the violence firsthand. It seems reasonable to conclude that children should be recognized as primary victims. My intent is to alert families and professionals to the problem of all forms of interparental abuse, to demonstrate the lasting impact it has on child development, and then to provide strategies that change outcomes not only for children but for society as well. But first we must evaluate how the psychological dynamics contribute to the physical violence.” (excerpt)
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