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Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 154-175; doi:10.3390/bs5020154

The Impact of Childhood Emotional Abuse and Experiential Avoidance on Maladaptive Problem Solving and Intimate Partner Violence

Department of Psychology, Capital University, 1 College & Main, Columbus, OH 43209, USA
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Academic Editor: Steven Kirsh
Received: 16 February 2015 / Revised: 10 April 2015 / Accepted: 13 April 2015 / Published: 16 April 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth Aggression and Violence: Causes and Consequences)
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Abstract

The purpose of the current study was to examine the joint influences of experiential avoidance and social problem solving on the link between childhood emotional abuse (CEA) and intimate partner violence (IPV). Experiential avoidance following CEA may interfere with a person’s ability to effectively problem solve in social situations, increasing risk for conflict and interpersonal violence. As part of a larger study, 232 women recruited from the community completed measures assessing childhood emotional, physical, and sexual abuse, experiential avoidance, maladaptive social problem solving, and IPV perpetration and victimization. Final trimmed models indicated that CEA was indirectly associated with IPV victimization and perpetration via experiential avoidance and Negative Problem Orientation (NPO) and Impulsivity/Carelessness Style (ICS) social problem solving strategies. Though CEA was related to an Avoidance Style (AS) social problem solving strategy, this strategy was not significantly associated with IPV victimization or perpetration. Experiential avoidance had both a direct and indirect effect, via NPO and ICS social problem solving, on IPV victimization and perpetration. Findings suggest that CEA may lead some women to avoid unwanted internal experiences, which may adversely impact their ability to effectively problem solve in social situations and increase IPV risk. View Full-Text
Keywords: intimate partner violence; childhood emotional abuse; experiential avoidance; social problem solving intimate partner violence; childhood emotional abuse; experiential avoidance; social problem solving
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Bell, K.M.; Higgins, L. The Impact of Childhood Emotional Abuse and Experiential Avoidance on Maladaptive Problem Solving and Intimate Partner Violence. Behav. Sci. 2015, 5, 154-175.

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