Should abused women stay in a relationship for the benefits of their children to prevent a dysfunctional family situation?
You are already in a dysfunctional family situation so no, you should get out while you can. It is bad enough when a spouse has to put up with their mate, but when children are involved "monkey see, monkey do." Abuse almost 100% begins in the environment at home so no matter what you may say to your children about abuse being a bad thing, they will pick up habits and could quite possibly have abusive issues in their own relationships when they get older. It's time to tell your abusive partner to get help and contact you with proof they are receiving help and don't go back until you are sure (by the counselors diagnosis) that your spouse is worth going back too. I am afraid to say if the abuser is male there is a very low percentage of male abusers that will seek help. Unfortunately it's time you started to plan on moving out (or having your spouse leave) to HELP your children. There are Abuse Women's Centers (also some for men) and if you can't find them then phone Mental Health and they will direct you. It's important to take their programs to learn the tools of becoming independent and how to deal with an abuser. They often will offer counseling, but you also can seek legal advice and I suggest you do. I wish you luck