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ERIC Number: EJ834959
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Mar
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0145-2134
The Relationship between Child Abuse, Parental Divorce, and Lifetime Mental Disorders and Suicidality in a Nationally Representative Adult Sample
Afifi, Tracie O.; Boman, Jonathan; Fleisher, William; Sareen, Jitender
Child Abuse & Neglect: The International Journal, v33 n3 p139-147 Mar 2009
Objectives: To determine how the experiences of child abuse and parental divorce are related to long-term mental health outcomes using a nationally representative adult sample after adjusting for sociodemographic variables and parental psychopathology. Methods: Data were drawn from the National Comorbidity Survey (NCS, n=5,877; age 15-54 years; response rate 82.4%). Logistic regression models were used to determine the odds of experiencing lifetime psychiatric disorders and suicidal ideation and attempts. Results: Parental divorce alone was associated with some psychiatric disorders after adjusting for sociodemographic variables (AOR ranging from 1.30 to 2.37), while child abuse alone was associated with psychiatric disorders (AOR ranging from 1.39 to 6.07) and suicidal ideation (AOR=2.08; 95% CI=1.57-2.77) and attempts (AOR=1.54; 95% CI=1.02-2.31) after adjusting for sociodemographic variables. However, having experienced both parental divorce and child abuse together resulted in significantly increased odds for lifetime PTSD (AOR=9.87; 95% CI=6.69-14.55), conduct disorder (AOR=4.01; 95% CI=2.92-5.51) and suicide attempts (AOR=2.74; 95% CI=1.84-4.08) compared to having experienced either parental divorce or child abuse alone. These results were attenuated when further adjusting for parental psychopathology. Conclusions: When the experience of parental divorce is accompanied with child abuse, the associations with some poor mental health outcomes are significantly greater compared to the impact of either parental divorce or child abuse on its own. Therefore, parental divorce is an additional childhood adversity that significantly contributes to poor mental health outcomes especially when in combination with child abuse. Parental psychopathology attenuated these relationships suggesting that it may be one possible mechanism to explain the relationships between child abuse, parental divorce, and psychiatric disorders and suicide attempts. (Contains 5 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A