Patterns of intimate partner violence exposure across the first 10 years of life and children's emotional-behavioural outcomes at 10 years

Alison Fogarty, Stephanie Brown, Deirdre Gartland, Grace McMahon, Kelly FitzPatrick, Monique Seymour, Melissa Kimber, Harriet MacMillan, Rebecca Giallo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Childhood exposure to intimate partner violence (IPV) is associated with emotional-behavioural problems. However, little is known about children's emotional-behavioural outcomes following exposure to different long-term patterns of IPV. Objective: The current study aimed to investigate the emotional-behavioural functioning of children at 10 years of age following exposure to different patterns of IPV across the first 10 years of life. Participants and setting: Data for this study was drawn from the Mothers' and Young People's Study- a longitudinal study of 1507 first time mothers and their first born child. Methods: Women were recruited during pregnancy from six public hospitals in Victoria, Australia. Data was collected during pregnancy, and at one, four and ten years postpartum. Four patterns of IPV exposure were previously identified: (a) minimal IPV exposure; (b) early IPV; (c) Increasing IPV; and (d) persistent IPV. Logistic regression was used to assess associations between IPV exposure and emotional-behavioural outcomes. Results: Exposure to early, increasing, or persistent IPV was associated with increased odds of experiencing emotional-behavioural difficulties (OR 2.15–2.97). Children exposed to a persistent pattern of IPV experienced over 6 times the odds of conduct problems (OR = 6.15 CI = 2.3–16.44). Conclusions: Children exposed to early, increasing, or persistent IPV experienced increased odds of emotional-behavioural problems at age 10, regardless of the duration or type of violence they were exposed to. However, children exposed to persistent IPV across childhood appeared to experience the highest odds of emotional-behavioural difficulties.

Original languageEnglish
Article number106814
JournalChild Abuse and Neglect
Publication statusPublished or Issued - Jul 2024
Externally publishedYes


  • Child
  • Emotional behavioural problems
  • Intimate partner violence
  • Longitudinal studies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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