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Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 176-189; doi:10.3390/bs5020176

Resilience in Physically Abused Children: Protective Factors for Aggression

1
Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, Case Western Reserve University, 11235 Bellflower Road, Cleveland, OH 44106-7164, USA
2
Helen Bader School of Social Welfare, University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, 2400 E. Hartford Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53211, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Steven Kirsh
Received: 13 February 2015 / Revised: 16 March 2015 / Accepted: 20 April 2015 / Published: 27 April 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth Aggression and Violence: Causes and Consequences)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [141 KB, uploaded 27 April 2015]

Abstract

Aggression continues to be a serious problem among children, especially those children who have experienced adverse life events such as maltreatment. However, there are many maltreated children who show resilient functioning. This study investigated potential protective factors (i.e., child prosocial skills, child internalizing well-being, and caregiver well-being) that promoted positive adaptation and increased the likelihood of a child engaging in the healthy, normative range of aggressive behavior, despite experiencing physical maltreatment. Logistic regression analyses were conducted using two waves of data from the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being (NSCAW-I). Children who were physically maltreated were more likely to exhibit clinical levels of aggressive behavior at Time 1 than children who were not physically maltreated. Children’s internalizing well-being, children’s prosocial behavior, and caregivers’ well-being were associated with lower likelihood of clinical levels of aggressive behavior at Time 1. Children’s internalizing well-being and children’s prosocial behavior remained significantly associated with nonclinical aggression 18 months later. These findings highlight the role of protective factors in fostering positive and adaptive behaviors in maltreated children. Interventions focusing on preventing early aggression and reinforcing child prosocial skills, child internalizing well-being, and caregiver well-being may be promising in promoting healthy positive behavioral adjustment. View Full-Text
Keywords: resilience; child physical abuse; aggression; well-being; prosocial behavior; longitudinal resilience; child physical abuse; aggression; well-being; prosocial behavior; longitudinal
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

Holmes, M.R.; Yoon, S.; Voith, L.A.; Kobulsky, J.M.; Steigerwald, S. Resilience in Physically Abused Children: Protective Factors for Aggression. Behav. Sci. 2015, 5, 176-189.

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