Mothers' Adverse Childhood Experiences and Negative Parenting Behaviors: Connecting Mothers' Difficult Pasts to Present Parenting Behavior via Reflective Functioning.
Kolomeyer, Ellen. Renk, Kimberly. Cunningham, Annelise. Lowell, Amanda. Khan, Maria.
Published: September 2016
Zero to Three
Vol. 37, No. 1 , p. 5-13
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Previous studies have supported a connection between adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and negative outcomes in adulthood. Fewer studies have examined the connection between ACEs and parenting behaviors, however. The study described in this article examined the relationships among ACEs, reflective functioning, and negative parenting behaviors in 233 mothers of young children who ranged in age from 2-5 years old. Findings suggested that there were significant relationships among these variables, with reflective functioning mediating relationship between ACEs and negative parenting behaviors. Thus, consistent with the theoretical underpinnings of many evidence-based, attachment-focused parenting interventions, reflective functioning may be an important port of entry for reducing negative parenting behaviors in mothers who were exposed to ACES. (Author abstract)
childhood trauma; child abuse; parenting skills; Adults abused as children; maternal behavior; mother child relationships; GENERATIONAL CYCLE OF CHILD ABUSE