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Family Violence and Stress


she was charged with first-degree murder. ... Psychogenic model of trauma: the more severe the abuse the more negative the consequences ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Family Violence and Stress

Family Violence and Stress
Introduction to Family Violence
  • Our homes- risk of emotional and physical harm
  • Families in trouble
  • Responding, adapting, and coping with tragedy and

Family Stress and Catastrophes
  • Family stress
  • An imbalance between demands on family and
    familys capacity to meet demands
  • Demands exceeding resources
  • ABCX Family Crisis Model

ABCX Family Crisis Model
  • A Factors
  • New Members or additions
  • Family Dismemberment
  • Deliberate Change
  • Demoralization
  • Sudden Change
  • Natural Catastrophes

ABCX Family Crisis Model cont…
  • B Factors
  • Family Crisis-Meeting Resources
  • Family Integration-
  • Family Adaptability-

The C Factor
  • The Family Definition of Crisis Event
  • Overestimation and underestimation of the
  • Y2K Computer problem
  • The 2006 summer storm of North Bay

Family Crisis etc…
  • Ability to cope depends on several factors
  • Changes in family result in other stressors
  • Strongly integrated families
  • Weakly integrated families
  • Social support

Abuse Within the Family
  • Family as the primary source for social support
    and comfort
  • Is this always the case?
  • Why is there abuse within the family?
  • Feminist Theory
  • Patriarchy within society
  • Women dominated by men
  • The assertion of patriarchy

Theoretical Perspectives cont…
  • Gender socialization
  • Social Stratification
  • Domestic violence is more common among
    lower-income families
  • The poor provide an obvious explanation
  • Social class socialization
  • The norms salient in society and their importance

Social Exchange Theory
  • Will be violent is benefits outweigh the costs
  • No negative sanctions for battering spouse
  • Social isolation and privacy allows for much of
    the abuse
  • Individuals were abused as a child

Dating and Courtship Violence
  • Dating as a fertile ground for dating violence
  • New arena to exercise power
  • Violent acts as a normal part of the dating
  • Dating violence as a predictor
  • Date rape
  • Gang Rape

Sources of Dating Violence
  • Still heavily debated
  • Psychological factors and the omission of macro
    sociological factors
  • Social construction of masculinity
  • Gender stratification
  • Childhood exposure to violence
  • Sexual abuse any physical abuse

Spousal and Partner Physical Abuse
  • Interpartner violence and the matter of power.
  • Patriarchal ideologies
  • Violence as an ego booster
  • Batterers as pathological or are they?
  • Gottmans experimental laboratory
  • Three types of violent men

Range of Violent Acts
  • A Range of acts
  • Throwing something at a spouse
  • Pushed, grabbed
  • Slapped
  • Kicked or hit with a fist
  • Hit or tried hitting with something
  • Beat up
  • Choked
  • Threatened with a knife or gun
  • Used knife or gun

Acts of Violence Cont…
  • The percent of women compared to the percent of
  • Women who abuse forcefully still the exception
  • Less force, less muscular, heavy, tall, strong,
  • Men are far more lethal
  • Rape as part of spousal violence

Factors Related to Spousal Abuse
  • Facilitated by our culture of violence and
  • Other factors within the broad cultural context
  • Alcohol and drugs
  • Cohabiting couples
  • Very low-income couples

Effects of Abuse on Women
  • Battered woman syndrome
  • ¼ of abused women turn to alcohol and drugs
  • Learned helplessness as a learned behaviour
  • Some learn it in childhood while others in adults

Learned Helplessness
  • http//
  • Why do they stay? Why do they take it?
  • There is no simple answer
  • May involve more fear of leaving and being on
    their own
  • Women may be completely controlled

Cycle of Violence Theory
  • 3 distinct phases
  • 1. Tension Building
  • 2.Uncontrollable Discharge of Aggression
  • 3. Loving Contrition
  • Lots of data to support this theory

The Role of Alcohol
  • Relationship between alcohol and abuse is well
  • Chronic alcohol use causes pharmacological
  • Batterers drank greater amounts and more often
  • Alcohol as a disinhibitor

Alcohol use among women
  • Women use alcohol in abusive relationships
  • Usually after the abusive occurrence
  • Alcohol serves as an excuse

Husband Abuse
  • Husbands are sometimes the victims of abuse
  • Wife-to-husband assault is more prevalent and
  • Psychological abuse is also more prevalent
  • May be in defence or regaining of power

Spousal Murder
  • Spousal murder is the most common type of murder
    in Canada.

Francine Hughes
  • On March 9, 1977, in Danville Michigan, Francine
    Hughes, aged 30, poured gasoline around the bed
    in which her husband slept and set it on fire.
    Then she went to the office of the County Sheriff
    with her three children and turned herself in.
    she was charged with first-degree murder. But
    during the trial the hury heard about her 12
    years of brutalization by her husband. One the
    day when she finally killed him, he had
    repeatedly beaten Francine, terrorized the
    children, forced her to clean up good and garbage
    he deliberately dumped out, smeared food on her
    face and hair, torn up her college course books,
    threatened to wreck her car to stop her from
    attending classes, and finally raped her before
    falling asleep, half drunk. The jury heard of her
    repeated, unsuccessful attempted to get help from
    welfare agencies and the police- and decided that
    she was not guilty

Domestic Violence Amongst Homosexuals
  • There was a belief that these unions are less
    violent- not the case!
  • Estimated between 22 and 46 percent of all unions
  • Similar reasons as heterosexual unions
  • Stay in the relationships for the same reasons

Child Neglect and Abuse
  • Children are potentially most at risk
  • Child neglect involves a broad range of parental
  • Interaction is generally withdrawn and
  • Likely to be extremely poor, single-parents,
    young parents, and female.

Child Neglect
  • Alcohol does play a factor in this case
  • Children suffer psychologically, socially and
  • Physical and verbal abuse the most common type
  • Verbal abuse can leave a child scarred for life.

Physical and Verbal Abuse
  • Definition of physical abuse
  • Severe physical abuse leaves lasting trauma
  • Those who have witness abuse
  • Often leads children to become abusive parents

Sexual Abuse
  • Different forms of sexual abuse incest, rape,
    touching, fondling
  • Distinction between contact and noncontact forms
    of sexual abuse
  • Researchers agree on three things

Short-Term Effects of Abuse
  • All have devastating effects on a child
  • Short-term effects occur within the first 2 years
    after abuse occurs
  • Includes fear, anger, hostility
  • Has varying effects on victims and they develop
    coping mechanisms

Four Destructive Coping Mechanisms
  • 1. Traumatic Sexualization- children are rewarded
    with affection for sexual behaviour
  • 2. Betrayal- experience betrayal of a loved one
  • 3. Powerlessness- Disempowerment
  • 4. Stigmatization- incorporated into childs

Short-Term effects cont…
  • More symptoms of distorted development
  • Significant self-blame and externalizing
  • Females more than males

Long-Term Effects
  • Psychosocial adjustment
  • Impairment in functioning, depression, anxiety,
    psychiatric disorders
  • Lower levels of tolerance
  • Difficulty in forming interpersonal relationships
  • Internalization of problems

Abuse of Elderly Parents
  • The emphasis on the elderlys caregivers- lashing
    out at the elderly parent
  • The child as already dependent on the elderly
    person- mental illness, unemployed, physically or
    emotionally challenged.
  • Spousal abuse grown old.
  • Canadian men as the perpetrators

Elder Abuse cont…
  • 1999 GSS data suggests
  • 7 percent emotional abuse
  • 1 percent financial abuse
  • 1 percent physical or sexual abuse
  • Material abuse
  • Very low visibility
  • Ashamed of the event
  • Intergenerational transmission of violence

Child Abuse Physical, Emotional
  • The incidence of abuse
  • Common in low-income families for good reasons
  • A proven relationship between child abuse and
    poverty despite the arguments
  • Living in a high-risk neighbourhood is correlated
    with increased risk of child abuse- why???

Causes of abuses cont…
  • Daily stressors and psychological distress
    exhibited by parents
  • Poverty forces various stressors on individuals,
    name some.
  • Leads to explosive and apathetic behaviours
  • History of mental illness also a good predictor
    or cause
  • Anti-social behaviours

The Reproduction of Violence
  • The danger of violence being reproduced as an
    effect of abuse
  • Has been widely debated and argued
  • There tends to be more episodes of severe abuse
    as well as coexisting types of abuse.
  • Do not always grow up to be abusive
  • Transmission of violence is lower than 30

Transmission of Violence
  • Mechanism not well known
  • An anti-social orientation to abuse- parents
    likely to have these characteristics.
  • Providing a strong and negative socialization
    experience for children.
  • The hereditary component- anti-social behaviours
  • Parental stress as a cause of child abuse

Consequences of Physical/ Emotional Abuse
  • Cannot assess their everyday struggles or lives
    for ethical and obvious reasons.
  • Children fare less well in school, more
    delinquent, more peer-related problems, and less
    reciprocal in relationships
  • Conflict with authority figures
  • There is a risk of becoming abusive in romantic
    relationships later on.

Child Neglect
  • Not what you do but what you fail to do
  • Neglecting an education, neglecting clothing and
    nourishment, etc.
  • Failing to reprimand their adolescents for
    inappropriate behaviours
  • Less detectable than abuse and less reported

Child Neglect cont…
  • Neglect is much more common
  • Poverty as setting up a double standard of
  • Only a few studies which document the effects of
  • Insecurity, aggressiveness towards peers,
    behaviour problems, lack of academic success.
  • The perception that family is no

Child Sexual Abuse
  • Definition of sexual abuse
  • Incidence is more complex than physical because
    of various reasons.
  • 1 in 4 females is sexually abused
  • Fathers are prime suspects
  • Majority of perpetrators are males but other
    variations do OCCUR!

Sexual Abuse The Effects
  • Sexually exploitive, early parenthood or
  • Psychogenic model of trauma the more severe the
    abuse the more negative the consequences
  • The victim being attached the abuser and seeing
    them as a trusting person-most damaging.
  • A precocious initiation into sex
  • A premature foreclosure on sexual identity.

  • The literature orientation
  • Violence within the family as a reflection of
    violence within society.
  • Other sociocultural factors in family violence