The effects of child abuse are far reaching and are often devastating both to the victim and their family. The five categories of child abuse and negligence are physical abuse, verbal abuse, neglect, physical neglect and witnessing domestic violence. These can be inflicted physically by pushing, hitting or shaking, or sexually by exposing the child in a sexual manner. Neglect can include giving the child an inadequate diet, leaving him or her without an education, denying him or her a loving environment.
The effects of child abuse or neglect can be compounded for a victim when they are witness to family violence. If the victim is present, the effects can be even more violent as the perpetrator, his or her parents, or others that are responsible for caring for the child may abuse the child because of anger, vindictiveness, power and control. A child who witnesses domestic violence may experience more severe consequences than if he or she were abused by someone in the family. Not only will the child suffer more serious injuries, but he or she will have greater chances of developing a lifelong fear of violence.
For anyone who is experiencing the effects of childhood abuse, it is essential to document the events. Journaling has been proven to be an effective way to deal with the effects of abuse. The Journal Of Child Abuse And Neglect can be kept for ten years, but preferably longer in order to capture all of the important details and nuances that will be important when assessing the effects of the traumatic events. Even after the ten year period, journaling is still an effective way of keeping in touch with the memories and experiences that can shape one’s future and the quality of life in general. In addition, if someone experiences the effects of child maltreatment and wishes to pursue legal avenues, keeping the journal will prove invaluable.
Physical harm resulting from child abuse can be devastating to the psyche. After the perpetrator leaves the scene, the physical consequences may be overwhelming and difficult to cope with. However, there are a variety of consequences that arise from neglect and physical harm, especially when the physical abuse is not committed with deadly force. Not only will the victim experience emotional trauma, but his or her physical health will also suffer.
Aside from the obvious physical repercussions, the emotional toll that is associated with child abuse and neglect takes on adults. Most adults who were victims of neglect as children find it difficult to form stable and lasting relationships. They may find it difficult to form friendships with other adults and tend to have trouble functioning within their work and personal environments. These consequences become much worse when the adults abuse alcohol or drugs to cope with the stress and emotions of the situation. In the worst cases, these adult addicts may even take their own lives. Fortunately, these consequences are preventable with early intervention and treatment.
When professionals assess the experiences of individuals who have been subjected to child abuse or neglect, they usually ask questions about their families and their lives before they begin investigating the case. The professionals will look at the histories of these adults. They will ask questions regarding their living experiences, what school they attended, if they ever experienced any legal issues or were arrested, and how many times they lived with different adults. The history also reveals the spouses of these adults and the ages of those involved. All of these pieces of information will help professionals develop a comprehensive portrait of the history of the cases.
Child abuse and neglect also reveal indicators of potential underlying behavior problems. When adults are exposed to patterns of behavior, such as physical, sexual, mental, or verbal abuse, they may exhibit similar behavior patterns in the future. Unfortunately, when these behaviors are not addressed, these patterns are likely to continue into adulthood. Children who are subjected to prolonged physical and mental abuse are more likely than others to exhibit risky behavior, such as drug use and eventual addiction. Abusive adults also are more likely than others to attempt suicide or to become depressed.
Although cases of child abuse are prevalent throughout the United States, they are on the rise across all ethnic and social levels. Sexual abuse is the most common type of child abuse experienced by children, occurring in almost every neighborhood in America. Statistics show that there has been a 20% increase in cases of sexual abuse filed in recent years. This statistic has led to calls for more educational opportunities for children, as well as greater governmental action to prevent this type of abuse from occurring. Child abuse can lead to many negative outcomes, such as drug abuse and delinquent behavior, so it is important that every adult to take steps to ensure that their communities are aware of this type of abuse.