Child Abuse: The Mistreatment Of A Child

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According to dictionary.com, child abuse is mistreatment of a child by a parent or guardian, including neglect, beating, and sexual molestation. Child abuse covers a wide range of harmful actions, which generally vary with the age of the child. The term child abuse covers a wide range of behavior, from actual physical assault to simple neglect of a child’s basic needs. Child abuse is also sometimes called child maltreatment. A discussion involving child abuse is often one that is hard to have, and that prevents so many children from reaching out for the help they may so desperately need. It also keeps so many adults who are in a position to help from recognizing a child in need. There are several different types of child abuse, and some children…show more content…
Unexplained bruises, broken bones, or burn marks on a child may be signs of physical abuse. Other signs include unexplained head injuries, unexplained lacerations or abrasions, poisoning, inappropriate drugs, food or drink, and confinement. School absences may also correlate with the appearances of injuries. The National Children’s Alliance reports that, in 2013, an estimated 1,520 children died from abuse and neglect in the United States. Government interference in these deaths and cases of abuse is often close to nil. DHS programs vary from state to state, and often time abusive parents are allowed to have their children back if they prove they are rehabilitated, even if the child doesn’t want to go back. Through personal experience, I know that the system often fails, even when the individual people within the system try their hardest. According to the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC), a London-based non-profit, the effects of childhood abuse extend far into adulthood in many ways. One way is through something called ‘revictimization’; many children who suffered abuse as a child will grow up to be abused again. Long term effects of abuse and neglect can include: emotional difficulties such as anger, anxiety, sadness or low self-esteem; mental health problems such as depression, eating disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), self-harm, or…show more content…
Emotional abuse is one of the most common and harmful forms of child abuse. Making fun of a child, name-calling, always finding fault, and showing no respect can damage a child 's self-esteem. According to a study published in 2014 by the American Psychological Association (APA), “Children who are emotionally abused and neglected face similar and sometimes worse mental health problems as children who are physically or sexually abused, yet psychological abuse is rarely addressed in prevention programs or in treating victims…” This creates a huge stigma around this type of abuse. It also allows abusers to use the type of rhetoric that my own father did, saying things like “there’s no such thing as abuse. That’s made up by liberals so that kids have a reason to think they’re being abused and the government has a reason to take kids away from their parents.” This rhetoric can also be called gaslighting. According to ngwnetwork.org “gaslighting describes the systematic pattern of abuse by which the abuser manipulates factual information to give the victim the impression that they cannot trust their own senses.” This makes victims, especially young children and teens, whose brains are still developing, not trust any of their senses, and can make it hard to trust reality even after escaping an abusive
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