Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Marriage and Family Therapy


Dyane Watson


Abuse, Caregiver, Conflict, Couple, Domestic Violence, Trauma

Subject Categories



It has been shown in research that childhood abuse can be detrimental to children and their abilities to cope, function at school, understand social situations, and even to communicate in their adult romantic relationships (Coleman & Widom, 2004; Haskett & Kistner, 1991; Perry, 2009). As a child that has been abused grows and forms relationships as an adult, the abuse can affect these relationships in negative ways (Unger & Luca, 2014; Coleman & Widom, 2004). However, close relationships that provide safety and attunement can help create healthy attachments that foster coping skills to counteract the effects of the abuse (Siegal, 2001). Data was taken from the intake assessment used in a clinic that serves individuals, couples and families. Individuals were used who were currently in a relationship. The results of this study indicated that those with a history of reported abuse and domestic violence in their childhood had statistically significant correlations between the satisfaction with their primary caregivers and conflict within their adult relationships. This study also found that abuse and domestic violence and satisfaction with primary caregivers predicted adult relationship conflict.


Open Access

Included in

Counseling Commons



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