ACE Questionnaire: "Violence towards mother"

Greetings!

I was recently facilitating a high-level Trauma Informed Care training and a question was posed that I am not sure of the answer to.  I would value your feedback!

The question is:

Has the “mother treated violently” language on the ACE Questionnaire been updated to include gender-inclusive language or roles (or is this still a gender-specific statistic like the “mother struggling financially”)?

 

 

Original Post

Hi, Grete: The original CDC-Kaiser Permanente ACE Study only included those 10 questions, and is not being updated with any others. However, the World Health Organization, the Philadelphia Urban ACE Study, and many other ACE surveys have added questions that are relevant to the populations they survey or serve. Some pediatric clinics that serve immigrant families, for example, have added this question: Have you lost a family member to deportation?

To look at other ACE surveys, go to this section of our Resources Center.

What many organizations have done before surveying the populations they serve is to ask what types of ACEs they've experienced, and then integrated the additional ACEs in their survey.

That question has always bothered me, both for the gender bias and also because it assumes an adverse childhood experience only if a child witnesses their mother harmed often, or repeatedly hit "for at least a few minutes." What if a parent was hit, but not “repeatedly hit for at least few minutes?"

A few more updated versions include:

  • Has your child ever witnessed adults in the home hitting, slapping, kicking or physically threatening each other? (from the Whole Child Assessment which is being used by pediatricians to screen for ACEs at Loma Linda University.)
  • To the best of your knowledge, has this child EVER experienced any of the following?  --Saw or heard parents or adults slap, hit, kick punch one another in the home (2016 National Survey of Children's Health, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau, and conducted by the US Census Bureau)
  • Your child saw or heard household members hurt or threaten to hurt each other (Center for Youth Wellness)
Grete Steele de Torres posted:

Greetings!

I was recently facilitating a high-level Trauma Informed Care training and a question was posed that I am not sure of the answer to.  I would value your feedback!

The question is:

Has the “mother treated violently” language on the ACE Questionnaire been updated to include gender-inclusive language or roles (or is this still a gender-specific statistic like the “mother struggling financially”)?

 

 

That's a really good question. The 10 questions on the questionnaire should be adjusted when it comes to the one about parents going to prison. I still don't know if I'm a 9 or 10. Simply because my father was in and out of jail all the time but he never went to prison. So the one question that asked if I had any parents that went to prison I said no. Maybe I should say yes because he was incarcerated at the county jail all the time. I kind of think others may not understand this question as well

 

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