Katja Ermann, Psy.D. is a 2019 graduate of the PsyD Program in Clinical Psychology at Antioch University, Seattle.

Dissertation Committee

Jude Bergkamp, Psy.D., Committee Chair

Elin Björling, Ph.D., Committee Member

Rochelle Coffey, Psy.D., Committee Member

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This qualitative study explores the experience of mothers parenting significantly aggressive children, ages five to 10. Little has been known previously about how women experience this aggression or the social and psychological impacts it has on them. This dissertation highlights the women’s understandings to provide a solid basis for theoretical explication using a Constructivist Ground Theory approach. Significant findings include the invisibility and stigma the women feel and the ways in which the experience is similar and dissimilar to other forms of family violence, particularly adolescent-on-parent violence (APV). Differences were found in social stigma between women whose child has a neurodevelopmental disorder and those parenting a child with trauma. Women were found to endorse a narrative that “good mothers” sacrifice even their own safety for their children and use their strong empathy for their children as a source of empowerment. Finally, the relationship of these findings to the literature as well as discussion of their clinical implications of the study findings are presented. This dissertation is available in open access at AURA: Antioch University Repository and Archive, and OhioLINK ETD Center,


Katja Ermann, Psy.D., 2019

ORCID Scholar ID#0000-0002-0732-9082