“Ever Assaulted Someone”
by Structure of Family of Origin
and by Current Religious Attendance
\"\" Patrick F. Fagan, Ph. D., Senior Fellow and Director of the Marriage and Religion Research Institute (MARRI) at Family Research Council
Scott Talkington,
Ph.D, has been Research Director for the National Association of Scholars and Senior Research Fellow at George Mason University School of Public Policy since 1998

The 1997 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth shows that adults who grew up in intact families and currently attended weekly religious services are least likely to “ever assault someone.”


Examining structure of family of origin, 12 percent of adults who grew up with both biological parents married commit assault in their lifetime, followed by those who grew up in an intact, cohabiting family (14 percent), those who grew up in a divorced single-parent family (22 percent), those who grew up in a married stepfamily (23 percent), those who grew up in an alternate family structure [i.e. with grandparents, in foster homes, etc.] (26 percent), those who grew up with an always-single parent (29 percent), and those who grew up in a cohabiting stepfamily (34 percent).


Examining current religious attendance, 15 percent of those who attend religious services at least once per week commit assault. They are followed by those who attend at least monthly (17 percent), those who attend less than monthly (21 percent), and those who never attend religious services (22 percent).


Examining current religious attendance and structure of family of origin, 11 percent of adults who worship weekly and grew up in intact families have committed assault. By contrast, 25 percent of adults who never attend religious services and come from all other family structures have at some point assaulted someone. Between these two extremes are those who never worship and grew up in intact families (15 percent) and those who attend religious services weekly but grew up in all other family structures (22 percent).


Related Insights from Other Studies

Data from the 1995 National longitudinal Survey of Adolescent Health showed that adolescent children living with their parents in an intact married family were less likely to engage in serious violent delinquency than were their peers in single-parent and stepfamily households. [1]

A study by Christopher G. Ellison of the University of Texas at San Antonio and colleagues found that religious practice is correlated to decreased risk of domestic violence. [2]

Another study found that frequent religious attendance in young adolescents correlated with increased likelihood of choosing nonviolent methods to solve hypothetical conflict. [3]

[1] Demuth, Stephen and Susan L. Brown, “Family Structure, Family Processes, and Adolescent Delinquency: The Significance of Parental Absence versus Parental Gender,” Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency 41(1) 2004,  pp.58–81.

[2] Ellison, Christopher G., Jenny A. Trinitapoli, Kristin L. Anderson & Byron R. Johnson. “Race/Ethnicity, Religious Involvement, and Domestic Violence,” Violence Against Women Volume 13(11) 2007, pp. 1094–1112.

[3] DuRant, Robert, Frank Treiber, Elizabeth Goodman & Elizabeth R. Woods. “Intentions to Use Violence among Young Adolescents,” Pediatrics Volume 98(6) 1996, pp. 1104–1108.

Дата публикации: 2011-08-19 01:09:56