Symptom Patterns Among Youth Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence

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Trauma, Domestic violence, Youth, PTSD, Child

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Children and adolescents exposed to intimate partner violence display a broad range of symptoms. We sought to differentiate symptom patterns and predictors of these patterns using a person-oriented approach. Previous cluster analysis research of exposed youth was extended to include youth PTSD symptoms and trauma history. Participants were 74 mothers who had received a police call for domestic violence, and who had a child between 2 and 17 years old. Cluster analysis was used to identify four symptom patterns among exposed youth: Typical, Asymptomatic, General Distress, and Acute PTSD. These patterns were replicated in separate cluster analyses with younger and older participants. Symptom patterns were differentiated by maternal distress, maternal aggression, and youth trauma history, but not by male partner aggression. Implications for assessment and treatment of youth exposed to intimate partner violence, and suggestions for further research, are discussed.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Journal of Family Violence, v. 23, issue 7, p. 619–629