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Harms of child abuse and how to prevent it?

Researched by Sarfraz
Updated on 1/1/2022

Child Abuse definition

Child abuse means bad or rough behavior towards children which can cause a huge impact on child health and personality.

Most children suffer this type of abuse from their parents, teachers, relatives, or their caretakers. Child abuse can be defined as emotional, physical, or sexual abuse that children receive from the caretakers like Parents, Relatives, or those who know them or also from strangers.

Parent-child abuse

Abusive behavior of parents towards their children is common in almost every culture or society. Parents can neglect their duties and in most cases, society or peoples does not take notice of it.

Abuse of children towards their parents gets a good notice by others but bad and rough behavior or attitude of parents with their children barely get the attention of most peoples if not posted on social media.

There is a long history of parents related child abuse. In the old past, a lot of peoples kills their children due to their newborn disability, illness, or gender difference.

Especially mistreatment with newborn girls was very common as many peoples from different cultures usually kill their newborn daughters at an early age.

Child abuse stories

There are numerous cases or stories about parents who abuse their children emotionally, sexually, physically, or neglect their born child severely.

A 3 years old young boy from Papua New Guinea was sexually torture by his mother. Research says whenever his mother gets mad at him, she reportedly masturbates him even at the age of 3.

According to the victim, it was a very harsh and ugly experience that put many adverse effects psychologically and physically on him. He hurt himself many times only to avoid being torture sexually by his mother. (1)

"A story of my cousin has also related to that type of abuse. Their father was too harsh that he severely abuse them from an early age, physically and mentally by using harsh language and severe beating tactics. Now 3 of them are suffering from depression, anxiety, and OCD. These three of my cousins are on high doses of Antipsychotics and they are still suffering the torture due to my abusive Uncle or their father. Due to less child protection rules implementation, no one can listen to them.

The mother of my cousin says their father is also some kind of Mental patient, who has no control over his language and physical acts. Perhaps he also needs psychiatry treatment. He has refused every complaint regarding his mental health as he says others are mental not him."

Child abuse by parents is not reported well by the media. In some cultures of Taiwan evil customs torture children severely. Studies say in some areas of Taiwan children are severely hurt due to their parents.

Research says in Taiwan some Children have to go through a painful mourning period after the death of their parent and in some cases, they usually die due to severe adverse effects they get from ugly customs that children have to follow after their parent's death. (2)

Suicide due to pain is also reported in these cases.

In western countries, some parents sexually exposed themselves to their little-aged children.

A sexual act in front of small ones is common as studies have reported. Sexual relations between foster parents with children are also reported. (20

A man who adopted a girl later sexually abuse her which left her pregnant at an early age. She killed her child after birth mostly due to the shame she might get from society. (2)

Another 12 years old girl was also adopted by a woman. She was sold to her foster mother for only 3 dollars.

Reports say she usually beat her too much and the little girl was forced to sell fruits on the streets, not selling or failing to get some money was related to severally beating by her foster mother. (2)

Teachers child abuse

Many teachers also abuse small aged children severally. In some countries beating a child for not completing school work is very common.

In developed countries, this behavior was also present in schools but modern rules and regulations have stopped or reduced such types of incidents. But in developed or poor countries such practice of beating students is still going.

There are many videos available on social media which show the brutality of some teachers to their children.

A case in my area where the school principal beat his 6 years old student too much that his legs and arms were broken. After few days he died due to severe punishment that his teacher implements on him.

Stories of child abuse

An Indian channel NDTV reported a case of a teacher who sexually abuses 5 minor female students. (3)

In another case, it was reported in Miami USA a 41 years old teacher sexually abuse minor students only to complete her sexual desire. Both teachers who were involved in these cases were arrested and punishment was given to them according to laws. (4)

Relative child abuse

This type of abuse is defined as physical, sexual, and emotional mistreatment that children receive from their relatives or peoples who know them.

Studies say in the United States Of America almost 30 to 40 percent of women were sexually abused in some way in their childhood. (4)

In most of these cases mostly relatives or peoples who know them were involved. Studies say in almost 81 percent of cases those children were involved who had not reached their puberty level. (4)

Rape and many other incidents are severely reported from all over the world in which many children were involved as victims and they were at their early ages. (4)

Physically and emotionally abusive behavior of relatives is also common. Many cases are reported in which relatives abuse children physically and mentally to force them according to their customs or needs. (5)(6)

Types of child abuse

Bad behavior or child abuse can cause a huge impact like it can affect the child's personality, and emotions greatly.

It can prevent a successful career to achieve or can stop or destroy the life and career of a child. Abuse especially during childhood time can create bad effects that may hunt the children may be for whole life.

Abusive behavior towards children can be of many types. It is present in many forms but there are 5 main categories of child abuse. Here are some common abuse forms towards children:

  1. Physical
  2. Psychological
  3. Sexual
  4. Neglect behavior

Physical abuse

The general meaning of physical abuse is using physical power to harms others or giving or implying punishment physically.

Physical child abuse means forcing a child for some work or giving them punishment by beating, hitting, kicking, pulling, pushing, burning, poisoning, strangling, and every other method that can injure the body or can harm the child's life. (7)

Most of these cases appeared due to some loss that parents get due to their children or when they try to implement their thoughts, customs or ways that they tell to do some work and not accepting their advice or order can lead to physical punishment which is also known as physical abuse.

Psychological or emotional abuse

Psychological means anything related to the mind or emotions of a person. Whereas psychological abuse means any type of torture or punishment that gives severe results by putting bad effects on a person's mind, emotion, or on their mental health.

According to the American psychiatric association, any targetted act that provides psychological harms to the child is called psychological abuse. It can be from parents or caregivers of a child.

Sexual abuse

Child Sexual abuse means using children to achieve or fulfill sexual desires. In many cases, victims are usually lured into sexual activities for prizes or money.

In most cases relatives were involved in these types of child abuse.

BBC reported a survey in which 76 percent out of 100 percent peoples who were approached say they were sexually assaulted or abuse in their early ages and most peoples says their relatives were involved in such ugly and inhuman acts. (7)

Neglect behavior or abuse

Neglect behavior towards children means not giving proper attention or assistance that they need. These needs can be emotional, financial, or physical.

If the parent doesn't give company to their child and also does not support them financially or according to their daily needs then that can be called neglect child abuse. Neglect behavior can be from father or mother both.

In many countries the father of a children's doesn't provide help in raising. This can cost a child a lot as the mother of the child may not provide good help or environment alone.

Other terms that can be used for this type of abuse are, not providing company, attention, or help that a child needs by parents or caregivers are called neglect behavior or abuse towards children.

Child abuse Statistics

Child abuse is happening at Too much frightening level. According to WHO 3 in 4 total children are facing physical or emotional abuse daily.

According to data, yearly 120 million girls face sexual abuse during their early life period. (8)

Studies say 1 in 5 girls have faced sexual abuse in their childhood. Boys are also not safe as research says 1 in 15 boys has to face sex-related abuse when that little one was under 17.(8)

Causes of child abuse

Here are some causes that may affect the child badly. Some factors that can cause child abuse are given below:

  • The poor financial condition of the parent
  • A mentally ill parent or caregiver
  • Unprofessional way to raise the child or having no knowledge to deal with children
  • Stress or depression can also cause havoc on children by parents or other peoples
  • Husband, wife, or partner-related dispute can also cause child abuse
  • Isolation or having no caregivers like homelessness can cause serious problems for children especially if he/she is handling this condition single-handed
  • Hate by parents or caregivers or by teachers also
  • The child who has the habit of Theft also face huge abuse by society or from parents
  • Inflation
  • Religious or race-based abuse is also common especially in schools or in society
  • The sexual attraction of a child can lead to sexual abuse. Child sexual abuse is common in some regions like in Afghanistan aged peoples use little age children especially boys for satisfactions
  • Money – There are some cases reported in which parents or caregivers were arrested for providing their children with sexual activities for monetary gains or some peoples offer children sexual exploration for money, this way sexual abuse can cause. (9) (10)
  • Too much pressure for study or life-related progress can also be the causing factor of child abuse
  • Children often make mistakes like they can steal or broke some valuable thing which can lead to too much interrogative torture
  • Child abuse at the workshop is common as some master beat little ones severely on mistakes
  • There are many strict customs or religious believes that different peoples from different regions follow, if a child does not follow or makes mistakes in those, that can also lead to physical or emotional abuse
  • The criminal record of parents can cause tortured condition for their children
  • Some children are also involved in criminal activities which can lead to severe consequences for them

Signs or symptoms of child abuse

Here is some sign that can help to discover a child that is suffering from some type of abuse. Remember it does not mean these signs explain the true symptoms or sign of child abuse but these signs just increase the probability to find abuse that a child might be facing:

  • Several Bruises or injuries on the body
  • Too much-frightened child
  • Sexual awareness at an early age may also indicate some signs of sexual encounter visually or physically
  • The depressed child can be the victim of some kind of abuse
  • A not financially stable child may be the victim as his/her situation can be due to negligent behavior of their caregivers
  • Pregnancy at an early age can be the strongest sign or reason for sexually abuse
  • Psychological problems in children can be the reason for child abuse
  • Lacking interest in activities that normal children like
  • Lack of confidence
  • Lack of ability to answer or question properly
  • High absence percentage in school
  • Angy or vigorous behavior
  • Lack of respect for teachers, parents, or caregivers
  • Sexually interaction at an early age
  • Telling others about sexual encounter or activity which he or she observes or were involved
  • Blood signs in pant
  • Neglecting studies or not liking school to go
  • Reporting teacher's harsh punishment several times or daily
  • Telling to parents that someone was trying to give money or prize for something or was telling them to follow somewhere
  • Bad physical body appearance like unhealthy condition

Effects of child abuse on children

Repetitive abuse behavior towards children can affect their health and performance badly.

Mental problems, physical problems, or many other issues can raise due to it.

Here are some major effects of child abuse and they may need to address well as there are chances of severity in results due to child abuse or torture that little ones receive:

  1. Harsh behavior with others especially with parents
  2. Social withdrawal or liking loneliness
  3. Physical problems like unable to perform or keep attention in doing physical works
  4. Depressed behavior
  5. Learning problems
  6. High-stress level
  7. Heavy heart rate
  8. Hypertension risks
  9. Cardiovascular issues
  10. Early school withdrawal
  11. Lack of ability to express thoughts or lack of confidence
  12. Insomnia or sleep deprivation
  13. Mental disorders like personality issues, depression, anxiety, PTSD
  14. Suicide risks
  15. Unsuccessful relation with others
  16. Can cause harm to parents, teachers or caregivers, or whoever insult them
  17. Can become weak due to inappropriate behavior of caregiver, parents or teachers
  18. If torture at school can make it hard for a child abuse victim to forget those days, even at the early age
  19. Eating disorders

"Take an example of me I still know the day when I join my school. I was 5 years old and on the first day, a teacher beat me too much. She was a bad reputed teacher and in my whole school life, her behavior with me remains very harsh. She usually beat me 5 times a week. I have forgotten many things but I still know her face in my mind, her name, and the house where she was living those days.

It does not mean that I am complaining, I am just trying to explain how child abuse can badly put an impact on a child's mind. That adverse effects can go for life"

Child abuse prevention

Here are some preventions that may help to stop child abuse:

If you are a parent:

  • Improve your behavior with children
  • Given the proper attention and company that they naturally need
  • Keep your eyes on your child behavior and notice any unusual change
  • Always keep information about your children's friend list or peoples who spend time with them.
  • Get alert if any unusual sexual change appear in little girls
  • Give your child money or foods according to their needs otherwise they may start getting it with other means or from peoples that may use them wrong
  • Don't beat them too much or daily
  • Talk with them or help them if an unusual or unhappy thing happened
  • Always try to respect their opinion also. Don't consider a 100 percent implement of your own rules on their life or work
  • Try to Provide them with what they need like food, toys, some money or your own company and love
  • Mothers are great and they can calm or handle the children easily. Children usually love their mothers more. If a mother will create a disturbance for them then they may get a huge impact from it. So avoid it
  • Take your child to the doctor if he or she has any health issues. Give high attention to mental illness or any unusual sexual change. Both can be linked with child abuse emotionally and sexually.
  • If a child is complaining against someone repeatedly like that person is trying to engage in unusual activity or is insulting then report that person to the police
  • If a teacher is involved in abuse then report it to the police or school administration
  • If others students are misbehaving with your child then talk with the school administration or police, if the problem isn't solving then consider changing the school for your loved ones.
  • If you are a father then don't let your children as they need you just like they need their mother

If you are children then you may get help against abuse from these prevention tips:

  • If an unknown person is trying to give your free money or a prize then don't take it. Report that person to your parents.
  • If school teachers' behavior is not good then talk with the school principal or head and address your problem to him or her.
  • If you have an abusive parent and they are not giving you proper rights then report it to the police as there are rules in many countries that protect children's rights. Most countries have strict child protection rules
  • Keep your interest in physical games like these can help against many psychological problems like stress, anxiety, depression, sleep problems, etc
  • Make friends because they might help you in harsh circumstances
  • Get help from the health clinic if you have any health-related issues
  • Make friendship with your age children and ignore the friendship feeling or offers with aged peoples
  • Avoid that person which gives you regular or persistent tension, stress, or has feelings to injure you. Be ready for any circumstances
  • Learn to fight like take classes for judo, karate, or boxing
  • Keep a paper spray with you
  • If someone is harassing you then report it to the police or your parents

Child abuse facts

Abusive behavior towards children is present in all living things. Some animals target other animals' children especially in big cats this abuse is very high as males usually kill their rival kids. In this way, new male get the chance to mate with rival party females and to achieve own bloodlines through them.

Child abusive behavior towards parents is reported well but parents abusive behavior doesn't get proper coverage. Most peoples consider parents have the right to beat their children even severally.

A child usually encounters too much abuse during school time. Physically, emotionally, sexually, neglected behavior abuse chances are more highly present in schools as compared to the house.

Most children suffered abuse from the peoples who know them

According to reports some parents or caregivers engage their children in the pornography business. A large number of child abuse-related illegal data online and offline is available, which is a sign of failure to control sexual child abuse.

Sex trafficking or selling children to other peoples for some money is also not very uncommon.

There are many cases reported in which big business or production companies are using children for hard work or other mature activities, most of these works or activities can be called child abuse.

In the past and present children were/are being used as war machines. Most terrorist organizations use children for suicide bombing. Children, woman suicide attack causes more fatalities as they can bypass most security checkups easily as compared to men.

Child abuse is common in developed countries also. Huge numbers of cases are being reported in the USA, Europe, UK, Canada, India, China, etc

In Taiwan, there are some weird customs are reported in which a child has to suffer too much after parents' death. Sometimes deaths or suicide cases are also reported.

Too much Pressuring a child against his/ her own will is also included in the list of child abuse

Too much abuse towards children can cause depression, anxiety, or other mental illnesses that can go on for life.

Homelessness of children is increasing due to child abuse

Numerous cases are reported in which teacher abuse their students physically, sexually, and emotionally, which raise many fingers towards child safety at schools.

There are a lot of terrorism-related cases in which they have done targetted activities against children like Peshawar army school massacre Pakistan, Candelaria child massacre Brazil, Beslan school siege Russia, etc.

Child abuse at schools is the major issue that causes many students to stop their studies

In developing countries, many children hesitate to get admission to schools due to the fear of punishment.

1 in 5 girls has face sex abuse while 1 in 13 boys has faced this type of abuse in their childhood.

In many countries, peoples kill their daughters due to adultery or due to keeping some relationship with someone without marriage. These acts are praises in many communities and societies where peoples feel pride after killing the couple.

  1. Google Books - Child abuse and neglect
  2. The history of child Abuse by Lloyd deMause
  3. NDTV - Goa teacher Arressted
  4.  NBC MIAMI - Hialeah Teacher Sexually Abused Multiple Students for Years: Police
  5. BBC - World: South Asia India's hidden incest
  6. WHO - World: South Asia India's hidden incest
  7. A Journal on Sexual Exploitation and Violence: Vol. 4: Iss. 4, Article 7.DOI: 10.23860/dignity.2019.04.04.07
  8. High Authority ✔️ CITATION: ABC NEWS
Health Diseases Preventions
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