Prevalence of childhood abuse in mothers taking part in a study of parenting their own children.

Helga Sneddon, Dorota Iwaniec, Moira Stewart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper describes the incidence of maltreatment histories in a community sample of mothers of one-year old infants in Northern Ireland. The occurrence of five subsets of childhood maltreatment is examined: emotional abuse, emotional neglect, physical abuse, physical neglect and sexual abuse. Of the 201 women who completed the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ), 70 mothers (35%) reported experiencing one or more types of maltreatment during childhood. Forty-eight mothers (24%) gave a history of being emotionally abused, 43 (21%) of emotional neglect, 27 (13%) of physical abuse, 20 (10%) of sexual abuse, and 19 (10%) of physical neglect. Physical abuse was the only type of maltreatment which showed an association with maternal socio-economic status, with higher incidence reported amongst Occupational Classes 4 and 5 (lower supervisory and technical occupations and semi-routine and routine groups). More than half of those with a history of abuse experienced more than one type of maltreatment (42 mothers or 60% of those reporting maltreatment). Differences in rates of incidence to more recent studies on younger adults are discussed, as well as implications for prevention and intervention.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-55
Number of pages17
JournalChild Abuse Review
Volume19 (1)
Publication statusPublished - 2009


Dive into the research topics of 'Prevalence of childhood abuse in mothers taking part in a study of parenting their own children.'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this