Exposure to violence and behavior problems during early childhood

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30 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to use an ecological framework to examine the potential predictors of behavior problems among children of cocaine-using mothers. Four potential predictors of child behavior problems were examined in this study: maternal substance use, maternal psychosocial functioning, maternal and child experiences with violence, and instability or inadequacy of caregiving. Maternal and child exposure to violence were considered distal ecological variables, whereas substance use and caregiving were considered to be more proximal variables. The study investigated whether the violent experiences contributed significantly to child behavior problems even after controlling for the more proximal variables. The participants were 61 African American or Hispanic mothers (26 cocaine using and 35 control) living below the poverty limit with children between the ages of 2 to 5 years. The results are discussed in terms of implications of interventions with children of cocaine-using mothers who are at high risk for behavior problems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1299-1313
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Interpersonal Violence
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1999

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology


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