Monday, May 16, 2011

Cohabitation and the abuse of children


According to a recent report (NIS-4), children living with their mother and her boyfriend are about 11 times more likely to be sexually, physically, or emotionally abused than children living with their married biological parents. Likewise, children living with their mother and her boyfriend are six times more likely to be physically, emotionally, or educationally neglected than children living with their married biological parents.

But children living with their own father and mother do not fare much better if their parents are only cohabiting. The federal study of child abuse found that children living with their cohabiting parents are more than four times more likely to be sexually, physically, or emotionally abused than their peers living in a home headed by their married parents. And they are three times more likely to be physically, emotionally, or educationally neglected than children living with their married biological parents. In other words, a child is not much safer when she is living in a home with her parents if her parents’ relationship does not enjoy the legal, social, and moral status and guidance that marriage confers on relationships.


Read more at Ruth Institute

2 comments:

Christina Dunigan said...

In the case of mom moving in with boyfriend I think it's largely a causal relationship -- mom choosing to live with an abuser, whether she recognizes him as an abuser or not.

The higher abuse rate among children of unmarried cohabitators versus married couples is probably caused by the same character flaws that make the people unwilling to marry in the first place -- an unwillingness to fully commit to another person's well being regardless of how you're feeling at the moment.

Secular Heretic said...

I think you are probably right Christina.

Having the mother live with the boyfriend is an abuse of each other.