Children Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence

Children Exposed to Intimate Partner ViolenceStats and Facts

  • Approximately 10-20% of children are exposed to partner violence each year, corresponding to 3 -10 million children1
  • Children reside in 43-50% of homes with reported domestic violence 2.3
  • Families with reported domestic violence tend to have a significantly higher number of children in the home, especially under age 5.4
  • The prevalence of child abuse in families where a parent is abused ranges from 30-60%, with a median of 41%. When child abuse does not occur, physical discipline is often used more frequently and can be more severe than in non-abusing families.5,6
  • Abused mothers tend to underestimate their children’s exposure to violence. One study found that less than 25% of battered women residing in shelters thought that their children had been exposed to the violence in their home. 7,8
  • Children exposed to violence may accept that aggression is the norm in family and social relationships, translating into aggression toward parents, siblings, peers, and onto their own children. Thus, witnessing violence can continue the cycle of violence.2 Reported Effects of Exposure

Internalizing and Emotional Effects

  • anxiety
  • low self-esteem
  • shyness
  • depression
  • suicide attempts
  • withdrawn
  • trauma/stress reactions
  • self-blame
  • physical problems