Child Abuse: Psychological Consequences

Child Abuse: Psychological Consequences


For the sheer reason that the problem of child abuse and neglect is marked by its pronounced character and urgency of the issue, I will pursue it in the research paper. The mentioned theme has been relevant for a good deal of time, and without any doubt, it will not lose the position for years in the future. It has such a scope that, according to Child Welfare Information Gateway (2013), abuse and neglect impact not just the child and family, but society as a whole (p. 7). The victim of any kind of violence or neglect is very unlikely to become a full-fledged, self-fulfilling, sensible person, citizen and parent, for the connection between childhood trauma and a range of problems-in-living takes place (Knight, 2009, p. 25). Therefore, the following key issue arises from the statement - desperate search for any clues, development of the policies pertinent and bringing them to life are of current importance.

Background Information

Panel on Research on Child Abuse and Neglect (1993) stated that four general categories of child maltreatment are generally recognized: (1) physical abuse, (2) sexual abuse, (3) neglect, and (4) emotional maltreatment (p. 43-44). A wide range of negative psychological effects characterizes each type. Sense of loss, fear, hatred, depression, and general distress are among the most common consequences. All these can transform into the long-term ones, becoming an essential hindrance for a normal living.

When it comes to such consequence as juvenile slovenly and outrageous lifestyle with bad habits progressing, I will mark out alcoholism. Victims of child abuse or neglect tend to be more prone to alcohol addiction than children brought up in loving and caring parental atmosphere. According to Nowinskis observation, the severity of the grown-up drinking problems among both women and men is directly related to the severity of their childhood abuse. There are also other horrendous repercussions to take into account. Those are petty theft, drug possession and sales, armed robbery, rape, and murder (Knight, 2010, p. 1). A glaring subject is sexual abuse, with its disastrous psychological consequences. Sturt (2006) has indicated the following aftereffects, typical for the victims of sexual abuse (rape): difficulty initiating sexual activity, apologetic regarding own sexuality, avoiding the topic of sex in conversations, infrequent sexual activity or giving it too high priority, and self-blame for having some sexual problems in relationship.

Child Welfare Information Gateways (2013) study found the following: the core question consists of two important parts: how to greatly decrease the number of cases of the mistreatment towards children, and how to keep the long-term consequences of the matter off (p. 6-7). I will expose and assess some clues to the problems solutions-to-find.

How to Prevent Child Abuse and Neglect

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First of all, it is vitally important for the community to develop and follow special strategies to prevent child abuse from happening. It is obvious that it is better to extirpate the causes of the problem, but not to rectify its effects without end. Activities connected with the issue include: raising public awareness and concern, specific procedures for identification of abuse, creating community support, concrete supports for parents, evidence-based methods, training competent staff for child protective services, evaluating prevention programs, etc. (Child Welfare Information Gateway, 2013; Samuels, 2011). Bryan Samuels (2011) has portrayed voluntary home visiting programs for families with parents or children with disabilities as a core local service that are ought to be evolved, and has also marked implementing criminal record checks for prospective foster and adoptive parents and other adults in their homes as an effective undertaking. Voluntary organizations need more publicity to let everyone get involved.

How to Treat the Long-term Consequences of Child Abuse and Neglect

The second clause is a response to the victims of abuse and neglect. Child Welfare Information Gateway (2013) has stressed that, alongside with breaking the series of maltreatment towards children, providing foster and treatment for the children, who have experienced maltreatment, is equally of real significance. In order to avoid irretrievable outcome, and help the young victims to recover, an integrated approach is the very means. Among the strategies to be implemented and measures to be undertaken, there are thorough screening and assessment of child maltreatment reports, building trauma-informed systems, programs for treatment with top-class medical experts, providing resources for caseworkers and caregivers (Child Welfare Information Gateway, 2013; Samuels, 2011). Acknowledgement of the international laws power, its growing moral vision and measures for people knowing, respecting, maintaining human rights, childrens ones in particular, (Levesque, 1999, p. 228-229) are a positive arrangement. Each separate case certainly needs a concrete approach. Panel on Research on Child Abuse and Neglect (1993) observed the importance of knowing more about the qualitative differences between the children, who suffer episodic experiences of abuse or neglect, and those for whom maltreatment is a chronic part of their lives (p. 49-50). It seems to confirm the idea that depending on the numerous circumstances, a complex therapy is to be worked up from diverse courses. According to Panel on Research on Child Abuse and Neglect (1993), these circumstances include cultural and ethnic factors, grade and character of abuse, and so on.


The arguments presented in this paper prove that the dimensions of the problem of maltreatment towards children are vast, with a succession of complications in the form of psychological disorders taking place. Thus, one should not ignore the question of preventing any form of child maltreatment and healing psychological disorders occurring because of it. Calamity will be beaten, provided that each group of the society representatives launches the required actions. Each child is worth having first and foremost full childhood, with adequate, reasonable, and solicitous parents, and in case of occurrence - proper response of psychiatrists, legal experts, social services, foster care centers, clinics and all volunteers eager to help.

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