International Journal of
Psychology and Counselling

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Psychol. Couns.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2499
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJPC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 222

Full Length Research Paper

Domestic violence, risky family environment and children: A bio-psychology perspective

Olusegun Emmanuel Afolabi
  • Olusegun Emmanuel Afolabi
  • Department of Educational Foundation, Faculty of Education, University of Botswana, Botswana.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 11 August 2014
  •  Accepted: 18 September 2014
  •  Published: 30 September 2014


Though a large body of research has investigated the impacts of domestic violence on adult’s  victims, only few studies has been devoted to the exposure of children’s to probable inter-spousal trauma that disrupts their neurological and biochemical pathways in development. The aim of this paper is to analyze the current empirical research that discusses the biological and psychological inference of domestic violence and risky family environment on children’s health. In realizing this objective, the paper used the ecological framework to explain the interaction effects of bio- psychological processes on emotional regulation and social competence skills of children living in a domestic violence and risky family environment. Finally, study shows that a risky and harsh early family environment exacerbates disturbances in children’ physiological and neuroendocrine responses to stress, and also has long-term adverse implication on their mental health.


Key words: Domestic violence, risky family environment, mental health.