Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Understanding The Cycle Of Violence

Date:
October 11, 2008
Source:
Indiana University
Summary:
Researchers have long known that children who grow up in an aggressive or violent household are more likely to become violent or aggressive in future relationships but the developmental link has been unclear. Researchers now say children who grow up in aggressive households may learn to process social information differently than their peers. "Children with high-conflict parents are more likely to think that aggressive responses would be good ways to handle social conflicts."

What kids see: Understanding the cycle of violence.
Credit: Image courtesy of Indiana University

Researchers have long known that children who grow up in an aggressive or violent household are more likely to become violent or aggressive in future relationships. What has not been so clear is the developmental link between witnessing aggressive behavior as a child and carrying it out as an adult. What changes occur in a child that affect whether he or she will choose to deal with conflict in aggressive or violent ways?

According to researchers from Indiana University's Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, children who grow up in aggressive households may learn to process social information differently than their peers who grow up in non-aggressive environments.

"Children with high-conflict parents are more likely to think that aggressive responses would be good ways to handle social conflicts," said John Bates, a professor of psychology in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences and a co-author of the study.

"This partly explains why they are more likely as young adults to have conflict in their own romantic relationships." Unlocking the developmental link between growing up in an aggressive or violent household and becoming the perpetrator of such behavior could prove useful for stopping the cycle of violence. According to Amy Holtzworth-Munroe, professor of psychology in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences and another co-author of the study, this research has implications for treatment and prevention.

"For example, treatments for male batterers may want to address a person's ability to evaluate his responses to certain social situations," said Holtzworth-Munroe. Bates cautions that this research is just one piece of the puzzle. "This is probably not the only factor mediating this association. We want to know how these processes work alongside other factors, such as emotional regulation, social skills or genetic processes," he said.

Study background: Bates began collecting data for this study in 1987. Parents and children were recruited from Nashville and Knoxville, Tenn., and Bloomington, Ind. When the children were five, they and their parents were interviewed. At ages 13 and 16, the adolescent offspring were presented with hypothetical social situations and asked to express their perceptions and reactions to the events as well as predict what they would have done in the situation. From ages 18-21, the offspring reported on the amount of aggressive behavior in their romantic relationships. Researchers continue to follow participants and plan on using this data set for future studies.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Indiana University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Fite et al. Social information processing mediates the intergenerational transmission of aggressiveness in romantic relationships.. Journal of Family Psychology, 2008; 22 (3): 367 DOI: 10.1037/0893-3200.22.3.367

Cite This Page:

Indiana University. "Understanding The Cycle Of Violence." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 October 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080924153505.htm>.
Indiana University. (2008, October 11). Understanding The Cycle Of Violence. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080924153505.htm
Indiana University. "Understanding The Cycle Of Violence." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080924153505.htm (accessed April 23, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How Smaller Plates And Cutlery Could Make You Feel Fuller

How Smaller Plates And Cutlery Could Make You Feel Fuller

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) NBC's "Today" conducted an experiment to see if changing the size of plates and utensils affects the amount individuals eat. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do We Get Nicer With Age?

Do We Get Nicer With Age?

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) A recent report claims personality can change over time as we age, and usually that means becoming nicer and more emotionally stable. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How to Master Motherhood With the Best Work/Life Balance

How to Master Motherhood With the Best Work/Life Balance

TheStreet (Apr. 22, 2014) In the U.S., there are more than 11 million couples trying to conceive at any given time. From helping celebrity moms like Bethanny Frankel to ordinary soon-to-be-moms, TV personality and parenting expert, Rosie Pope, gives you the inside scoop on mastering motherhood. London-born entrepreneur Pope is the creative force behind Rosie Pope Maternity and MomPrep. She explains why being an entrepreneur offers the best life balance for her and tips for all types of moms. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sorry, Guys, Only Women Can Make Their Voices Sound Sexier

Sorry, Guys, Only Women Can Make Their Voices Sound Sexier

Newsy (Apr. 21, 2014) According to researchers at Albright College, women have the ability to make their voices sound sexier, but men don't. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins