Psychological Abuse Goes Undetected in Children
04 Aug, 2012 - 11:08pm
Have you seen a child being terrorized, corrupted, denigrated and belittled by his or her parents or caregivers? Or have you been a victim of such acts? How did these acts affect you? What do you do when you see a child being hurt psychologically? As a parent, would you want your child to go through these experiences or can you dare hurt your child?
Psychological abuse among children has been prevalent since 1980s yet the effects of this abuse are not easily recognized even by professionals. These abuses are most destructive when they are inflicted on the child during his or her first three years of existence. During this period, children are very vulnerable and they need every attention, love and care that their parents can give them. Once they feel unwanted, unloved and worthless, they would bring these feelings with them for life and these will surely make their self-esteem and confidence very low.
Some parents believe that what they are doing are the right things because they have grown in the same situation. What they do not know is that they are destroying their child’s life through their harsh words and actions. We must also know that simply raising one’s voice to instruct a child several times is not a way of abusing a child. What is abusive and destructive is when parents tell their child how they regret having him or her as a part of their lives. Or how their lives have been changed for the worst since the child came or how miserable they are because of him or her.
Although psychological abuse, like emotional abuse, is not as obvious as physical abuse but it is still very harmful to the well-being of the child. These can affect the child’s social, emotional, intellectual and physical development. He or she may grow as an introvert or extrovert, shy or showy, friendly or unfriendly, passive or aggressive. He or she may also do this kind of abuse to his or her friends as a way of avenging himself or herself.
Children who show signs of being psychologically abused must be given attention and care by pediatricians, child protection and psychiatric professionals. They may also need to leave the confines of their homes for them to be able to recover and regain their self-worth. Parents should also be given the right education on how to raise their children well. They should also have a grasp of the effects of all forms of abuse, namely: psychological, emotional and physical abuse to children and to them as well.
The community must also be involved in stopping this kind of abuse to children. As responsible citizens, we must try our best to stop parents or caregivers who are abusing their children psychologically either in public or at their homes. Teachers may also provide more help to abused children because these kids are left on their care during school hours and most of the signs may manifest in class or during break time.