”I want to be better than you:’ lived experiences of intergenerational child maltreatment prevention among teenage mothers in and beyond foster care
Child and Family Social Work, 2016
Elizabeth Aparicio, PhD, MSW
Aparicio, E. M. (2016). ‘I want to be better than you:’ lived experiences of intergenerational child maltreatment prevention among teenage mothers in and beyond foster care. Child and Family Social Work, 22, 607–616. https://doi.org/10.1111/cfs.12274
This study focused on a particular dimension of motherhood: participants’ efforts to break the cycle of child abuse and neglect with their own children. Two themes emerged as characteristic of these experiences: (i) treating children well/parenting differently and avoiding the system; and (ii) reducing isolation and enhancing support. Given the increased likelihood of the children of teen mothers – particularly those who have been maltreated – becoming involved with the child welfare system, study findings suggest possible strategies for disrupting cycles of intergenerational child welfare involvement generated by young mothers themselves. Practice implications for addressing possible substance abuse, mental health and relational and parenting needs are discussed.