Children who are domestically abused are normally angry and aggressive after a slight provocation. More so, they are withdrawn and keep to themselves without indulging in any social activity. They are never cheerful and always wear a dull face. Other signs of domestically abused children include fear, depression, anxiety, hyperactivity, PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder), and low self esteem (Jones . 41). Effects of Abuse Domestic child abuse leave life long scars irrespective of the abuse type.
The scars might physically be seen and will heal away but emotional scars have effects that are long lasting. The emotional damage caused by domestic abuse is the most severe and affects a child in almost all aspects. Children who are emotionally abused find it difficult to maintain healthy relationships, cannot function properly at home and at school among other damages (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par 8). Physical abuse can lead to severe injuries or death. Children get bruised faces, broken legs and hands among other injuries. (Carter, par 5).
Some children cannot endure the torture and they die in the process. “More than three children die per day because of child abuse” (Carter, par 22). Carter laments in an article on, Domestic Violence, Child Abuse, and Youth Violence: Strategies for Prevention and Early Intervention (Carter, par 22). Following a research carried out between the years 1990 to 1994, about 5,400 children had died as a result of domestic child abuse (Carter, par 5). As Newman in his book Sociology: Exploring the Architecture of everyday life “Child abuse can sometimes be fatal” (Newman 212).
According to a study carried out in the year 2004, approximately 1, 5000 children faced death as a result of abuse and neglect. Further studies revealed that of the deaths, 90% of the children had been killed by parents, a parent’s unmarried partner or close relatives. Most of the children, about 80%, who succumbed to death, were less than four years of age (Newman, 212). The children lack trust with their parents. Saisan, Smith & Segal in their article on Child Abuse And Neglect ask a very sensitive question, “If you can’t trust your parents, who can you trust?
” (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par 8). When the primary caregivers have damaged their relationship with a child, the child lacks trust in them. They feel that their emotional needs as well as physical needs cannot be met by people responsible for taking care of them. When a child grows up with this mistrust, it is difficult in future to trust other people. The children will have problems in keeping relationships for fear of abuse and control. More so the child had never known what it means to have a good relationship and may end up in unhealthy relationships (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par 10).
Neglect and abuse of the child at home can break the attachment of the child from the caregiver or a parent who is abusive. The relationship between the parent and the child can easily be lost if the child constantly faces domestic violence. It can be so dangerous when the relationship is broken as the child can even deteriorate in behavior with an effort of hurting its parent. The child lacks respect for its parents (Jones 41). Domestic child abuse leads to a low self esteem. Due to constant abuses at home, the child feels worthless. It sees itself as a bad child who cannot do the right thing.
For instance, when one grows in a family where he/she is always regarded as stupid, this is cultivated in the mind of the individual and it is very hard to change these feelings even as an adult. They will therefore end up doing poorly in school because they believe they are stupid. Even in working conditions an individual will not aspire for high level jobs because they believe they cannot deliver (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par. 11). Very Young children cannot understand why they are being abused and tend to believe they must have committed a crime while it may not be the cause.
They therefore start blaming themselves. Since they lack the ability to express their feelings, they become withdrawn and silent. Their self esteem is destroyed in the process (Volpe, par. 13). A pre-adolescent child can greatly externalize the negative emotions and will loose interest in any social activity. They become defiant at home and in school aggressive to other people especially in school and worse still, they are likely to indulge into drug and substance abuse (Volpe, par. 14-15). Children who have been victims of domestic abuse have difficulty in expressing their emotions.
Their emotions come out in ways that are unexpected. In the adult life, the person will always have struggles with anxiety, anger, depression that cannot be explained. These painful feelings may lead them into alcohol and drug abuse in a way of numbing them (Saisan, Smith & Segal, par. 12). Children who are assaulted in their families can loose concentration in class leading to poor performance. They can at times drop out of school as they have lacked meaning in life. Due to physical injuries, they are constantly absent from school to nurse their injuries. This negatively affects their studies (Jones 41).