Psychology, Department of


Date of this Version

December 2001


Published in Journal of Family Violence 16:4 (December 2001), pp. 361-373. Copyright © 2001 Plenum Publishing Corporation/Springer Verlag. Used by permission.


Presumably, anger is a common experience of parenting. Although practitioners and researchers recognize the role of anger in various parenting situations, objective and standardized measures of parental anger have been notably lacking in the field. This study examined the Parental Anger Inventory (PAI), a measure developed specifically to assess parental anger in response to child misbehavior. A diverse sample of 98 parents participated in the study, including (a) physically abusive or neglectful parents, or both, n = 44; (b) nonmaltreating clinic parents seeking assistance for child behavior problems, n = 24; and (c) nonmaltreating, non–help-seeking community parents, n = 30. Results support the internal consistency, temporal stability, and convergent validity of the PAI. Findings also demonstrate the PAI’s potential utility when working with maltreating and help-seeking parents. Results highlight the importance of assessing parental anger toward children and support the use of the PAI in assessment, treatment, and research.