Keeping it in the Family: Intergenerational Transmission of Violence in Cebu, Philippines

Mahua Mandal, Michelle J. Hindin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


While witnessing violence between parents is one of the most consistent correlates of experiencing intimate partner violence (IPV) in later life, little research exists in developing countries on the effects of witnessing interparental IPV on young adults’ involvement with family violence. This study examines the relation between witnessing interparental IPV and young adults’ subsequent use and experience with family intimidation and physical abuse (FIPA) in Cebu, Philippines. Using data from the Cebu Longitudinal Health and Nutrition Survey, recent use and experience of FIPA among 21–22 year old young adults was assessed through self-reports from the 2005 survey, and childhood witnessing of interparental IPV assessed from the 2002 survey. Multinomial logistic regression was used to examine the effect of witnessing interparental IPV on young adults’ use and experience of FIPA. Among all young adults, witnessing paternal perpetration of IPV predicted using FIPA, and witnessing maternal perpetration predicted experiencing FIPA. Among young adult females only, witnessing reciprocal IPV between parents predicted experiencing FIPA. Witnessing paternal perpetration of IPV among young adult males, maternal perpetration among young adult females, and reciprocal interparental IPV among all young adults predicted young adults both using and experiencing FIPA. Violence prevention efforts should reach all family members through family centered interventions. School based curricula, which largely focus on intimate partner and peer violence, should recognize adolescents’ use and experience of violence with family members, and design modules accordingly. Further research on gender differences in family violence is recommended.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)598-605
Number of pages8
JournalMaternal and child health journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2015


  • Adolescents
  • Family violence
  • Intimate partner violence
  • Intimidation
  • Philippines
  • Physical abuse
  • Young adults

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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