Though there may be different types of domestic child abuse, the core element is their effect on a child’s emotions. Whether the child was abused by slapping, a comment that is harsh, stony silence, or going without dinner, they all breed a feeling of insecurity, not being cared for and loneliness (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par 13). Physical Abuse Physical injury or harm can result from a deliberate attempt by the parent or the care giver to hurt a child. It can also be as a result of instilling discipline in a child.
Severe beating given as punishment that is not in accordance to the age of a child is physical child abuse. Additionally, when a parent physically attacks a child out of anger, he or she is abusive. A child should be made to know what is right or wrong in a calm way and not when the parents fumes with anger (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par 18-20). This is the most common type of child abuse. According to reports 143, 300 children had suffered serious injuries out of physical abuse in US in the year 1990 (Carter, par 23). Emotional Abuse
The old adage “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me? (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par 14). As quoted by Saisan, Smith & Segal in their article on Child Abuse and Neglect this saying will not apply when it comes to domestic child abuse. Emotional child abuse such as humiliating a child constantly, calling negative names, constant yelling and threatening the child, limited or no contact with the child such as hugging causes severe mental damage to a child leaving psychological scars that will for ever remain (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par 15). Sexual Abuse
Sexual abuse is not always a body contact. Even exposing a child to a sexual materials and situations is abusive. Both girls and boys are at risk of sexual abuse from close relatives and caregivers. This abuse leads to shame, guilt and makes a child feel stigmatized. They develop a hate towards themselves leading to sexual problems at later days such as failure to indulge into intimate sexual relationships (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par 21-23). Child Neglect Failing to meet the basic needs of a child such as enough food, clothing and even supervision can be dangerous.
A parent might physically or mentally fail to provide for the child and this will hurt their parent-child relationship. The older children in case of neglect will play-act as if all is well but neglect also affects them (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par 16-17). Causes of Domestic Child Abuse Personal factors like stress and frustration are the major causes of domestic violence on children. The children spend most of their time with the members of his/her family. They are the people that children interact most with.
Emotions in families run deep. For instance, anger towards a stranger cannot be compared to the anger towards a child at home. Newman in his book points out that “Family life contains endless sources of stress and tension” (Newman 212). Children expect so much from their families ranging from warmth, intimacy, emotional to financial support. When the children’s expectations are not met, stress takes toll. The child will start grappling and this can lead to their attack by parents or even elder members of the family.
On the other hand birth and bringing up a child, employment transitions, financial problems, illnesses, among other factors are enough stressors to parents such that when slightly provoked by their children can lead to beatings and other forms of child abuse (Newman 212). When a parent or a caregiver is frustrated by life’s stressors, he or she may displace his anger to the vulnerable creature in the house. In the process, children are injured not because they have committed any crime but the parent’s failure to control their emotions (Williams, par 1).
Addictions to alcohol and other drugs make great contributions to child domestic violence. Addiction to Alcohol leaves one with less self control not only when one is drunk but also when he/she is sober. The poor self control make one abusive to his/her children or the children that are put under the care if him/her. This is the leading cause for sexual child abuse at home (Williams, par 1). Domestic violence between parents leads to child abuse. When a child witnesses his/her parents in a tug of war, he is emotionally affected.
It may become implanted in a child and may lead to youth and adult violence as well as other criminalities (Carter, par 4). More so, children can be physically injured in the process. The injury may be accidental during their parents’ attacking each other. For instance when an object is thrown and hits the child. Small babies may be hurt while it is being held. Children also are attacked while trying to make interventions to the fighting parents. Dangerously, a child can also be hurt intentionally in an effort of one parent trying to intimidate the other.
Whether emotionally of physically, accidentally or intentionally, domestic fights between partners is one of the leading causes of domestic child abuse (Carter, par 6). Gang affiliation especially for children who are at their teens is also a cause to domestic abuse. The teens are bound to give away their family loyalty to their gangs. They for this move disrespect their older siblings and more importantly their parents. This can lead to attack by the family members even when they mean no harm for the child. The teens who now feel above the family law are constantly reported of attacking their parents and elder siblings (Williams, par 1).