The association between historical childhood sexual abuse and later parenting stress: a systematic review (2017)

Childhood sexual abuse (CSA) is arguably the most toxic experience to occur in childhood and therefore may be particularly likely to impact on parenting stress in the context of parenting one’s own children. This 2017 paper aims to review studies investigating associations between earlier CSA and later parenting to determine the size and consistency of the effects, identify any mediators and moderators of the relationship, and assess the quality of the evidence base. Seven studies indicated a degree of direct association between experiencing CSA and later parenting stress, two studies found no association and five studies suggest that other variables such as locus of control and current stressors may affect the relationship between CSA and parenting stress. Additionally, 10 studies suggest an indirect relationship between CSA and parenting stress through current level of depression.