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Parenting

Understanding & Preventing Child Abuse

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The day we think that the time we spent with the kids can be compensated by expensive gifts and nannies is the day we fail to ensure our kid’s mental health. In this fast world, our kids are subjected to different kinds of abuse. Child abuse can be physical, emotional, verbal, or sexual. We have to pay close attention towards the changes in kid’s attitude and behavior to know if they are being abused. It’s the parent’s duty to ensure their kid’s mental and physical health. A basic understanding of child abuse is very crucial for keeping them safe.

Emotional/Psychological Abuse:

Emotional/Psychological Abuse include constant criticism, threats or rejection, making them witness physical abuse as well as withholding love, support or guidance. These are mostly caused by persons who hold importance in the kid’s life. At times, we parents knowingly or unknowingly hurt the kids by the calling them names, threatening to hurt them physically(even if not doing it). We vent our frustrations of the worldly happenings on our kids. But, it is our responsibility to give our kids a peaceful environment.

Parents who undergo divorce should consider their kid’s emotions, mental health and should plan their divorce settlement accordingly. They should not drag their kids in the process. Single parents, rather than wallowing in self-pity, should work towards their kids and their emotional improvement.

Physical Abuse:

Any actions which threaten the physical well being of the child is Physical Abuse. When a child shows signs of maltreatment it’s important to report to the authority. Unfortunately, it happens both within the family and outside.

In Family:

The Parents/Care givers should keep in mind that physical abuse is not an excuse to discipline kids. As adults, we don’t get to inflict pain. This not only affects the kid physically but also leads to emotional trauma. Children often love or afraid of these people and hence they don’t bring it to the knowledge of others.

Among Friends:

Parents should ensure that their kids have healthy friends. We can’t  monitor kids 24/7 with whom they play but we can make it a point that our kids keep us informed when there is physical abuse among friends. Make sure you are not overprotecting your kids which might spoil the sport. Communicate often with your kids and try to understand their world and the persons they are close with. Check for bruises(mysterious or frequent), know your kid’s friends, and check for a change in behavior or attitude (in your kids).

Sexual Abuse:

Sexual Abuse in kids involves both touching and non-touching activities such showing pornography, making them pose for the same, deliberately exposing adult genitals etc.

Educate the child about good touch and bad touch. Allow your child to communicate with you. Trust your kid with their opinion, don’t make light of it. Make it a point that your child spent maximum time only with age appropriate people. Give keen attention towards their night mare, becoming suddenly withdrawn, mood swings, bruises etc.

In a haze to achieve new goals, we should not forego the important factor in our life. It’s we who brought them to the world and it’s our responsibility to make it a better place for our kids to live in. The best gift we can give our kid is our time and it cannot be compensated by any gifts or rewards. It is important to boost their confidence and prepare them to face the world.

Aruna Devi

Arunadevi is a fun loving and a people person. She holds an engineering degree in computer science and technology, worked in the corporate world and later, went on to pursue her master's in business management. She believes in feminism and a proud mother of an 8 year old kid. She is one among those , who thinks the world becomes a better place to live in with sharing and communicating. Therefore, she decided to share, and to go for an yet another dream of making "the better we".

13 Comments

  1. This is such an important topic for parents to have a plan to deal with, and not be caught unawares with – as well as to be aware of all the different forms that abuse can take. Thank you for writing this post on such an important topic!

  2. A very relevant topic for the times we live in. Being aware of being abused is extremely important. I guess as parents the best we can do is to give them an environment where they can talk freely to us – that will give them more confidence to share and we might be able to prevent something unfortunate from happening. Thank you for sharing this.

    • suja

      Thank you Sreedeep. When it comes to abuse most of the parents blame their kids which is totally absurd. The thumb rule here is we should never blame our kids because abuse is never their fault. Reassuring this creates a better bonding which encourages them to communicate with us when the unfortunate happens.

  3. Children are so vulnerable; it breaks my heart to see how quick some parents and other adults are to abuse their trusting and relatively powerless natures.

    • suja

      I totally agree with you Holly. Sad part is they are mostly abused by their loved ones…

  4. Great article. You’ve hit on some very important topics that every parent worried about!

    • suja

      Thank you Natalie. Yes talking and understanding the issue helps in preventing and resolving when its not too late.

  5. This is a great and much needed post! I think child abuse and other abuses should be discussed and the signs. As a mother, I try to keep abreast of the discussions that have anything to do with children or woman being hurt. Great post!

    • suja

      Very true Ejnosill. Thanks to Aruna for writing such a great article for PassionateMoms.

  6. It’s so important to be educated and educate your children on all types of abuse. We live in a scary world, and I don’t think you can be too prepared. Great information!

  7. This subject is not taught enough and I thank you so much for getting the awareness out there! I discuss these things with my children on a regular basis because you never know what’s going on and I always want to leave that open door for them if they need help.

    • suja

      That’s a safest strategy Ana. Yes, we need to communicate with our kids whenever possible assuring that we are there for them no matter what.

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