Child abuse is one of such delicate topics that arise several controversies and discussions. Nevertheless, no matter how frightening and unpleasant this subject may be, unfortunately, violence against children is a serious and widespread problem. I picked this topic because millions suffer from abuse, and I would like to educate more people about it. Moreover, it is still possible to prevent aggressive acts by implementing various measures. They include preparing children for possible problems and dangers, as well as teaching parents about establishing relationships in their families. Creating facilities where children can get help as soon as possible is also vital.
First of all, it is important to define abuse since many different types of mistreatment can be committed against adolescents. For instance, physical violence is one of them, and in such cases, a child suffers non-accidental injuries. They can be inflicted by a parent, a relative, a legal guardian, or other people. This type of abuse is extremely dangerous since wounds not only weaken a child’s trust but also can facilitate mental or developmental disabilities. In addition, children who constantly experience physical violence are in dire need of medical attention.
Mental violence is a form of violence, which is committed through intimidation and threats to break the will of victims to resist, defend their rights and interests. In such cases, the impact on the human psyche is immense. Another type of abuse is emotional, which is a long-term negative psychological influence of parents or guardians on a child, which leads to the formation of mental disorders. The reason why these forms of violence are especially dangerous is that they are not always visible to those who are outside the family, which makes it harder to identify.
The priority should be put on activities that protect children from abuse and prevent such acts. These operations include determining the risk factors of abuse, identifying and correcting problems in family relationships at an early stage. Parents should be taught that they need to manage their anger issues and speak calmly to children instead of intimidating them. It is important to establish relationships in the family in which the child can share everything with the parents. Researchers suggest implementing behavioral parent training programs because they may “reduce the recurrence of child abuse and neglect while teaching parents specific skills to build a safe, stable, nurturing relationship” (Fortson et al., 2016, p. 29). Acquiring the skill of open and honest communication will help them to teach children about the importance of love.
Another helpful measure is providing support for hotlines that offer help to children in difficult situations. Such organizations provide psychological help and counseling completely free of charge. However, they often lack funding; therefore, the government and policymakers should pay more attention to them. Additional financial help can help those hotlines to employ more workers and implement training programs for them. As a result, children get more opportunities to report cases of abuse and reduce the risk of experiencing it further.
The fact that many children are subjected to violence has been recognized throughout history. There is no doubt that mistreatment poses significant risks to the physical and mental well-being of young people, which can have a serious negative impact throughout their lives. Even though several measures have been suggested and implemented over the past years, there is still a large amount of work that remains.
Fortson, B. L., Klevens, J., Merrick, M. T., Gilbert, L. K., & Alexander, S. P. (2016). Preventing child abuse and neglect: A technical package for policy, norm, and programmatic activities. National Center for Injury Prevention and Control Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.