Physical child abuse moves victims a step closer to being bullies and even perpetrators of violence, like child abuse, themselves. This website focuses on all aspects of this stark statement which links physical child abuse, bullying, and violent crime.
Physical child abuse.*
The following short post is adapted from Chapter One of The Bullying Antidote, a positive parenting guide by Louise Hart and Kristen Caven. That chapter entitled “And How Are the Children?’ constitutes an overview of the ways bullying connects with our worst societal ills, a concept that needs to be made clear.
“Hurting and Killing our Children.
How our high rates of childhood death are connected to bullying:
Over the past ten years, four times the number of children in the U.S. are believed to have been killed in their own homes than U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan. Of the 20,000 deaths due to child neglect and abuse, nearly half were under one year old, and 75% were under four years of age.**
The bullying connection
Parents can be the worst kinds of bullies. The simple fact of the matter is that, under stress, adults can become violent when they don’t know a better way.
For all children who are killed, many more are abused, and only a portion of them visibly enough to be served by Child Protective Services. Mistreatment by parents is especially damaging because kids are being hurt by the very people who should be protecting them!
Parenting can be the most stressful job in the world, and those who harm their children live in a world of regret. All parents need to have supportive resources, and learn ways to manage stress effectively and safely to avoid hurting their children accidentally.
And . . . victims of child abuse are more likely to be bullies.”
Adapted excerpt from The Bullying Antidote, “an in-depth trove of easy-to-implement strategies in abuse prevention” that “triumphs as an in-depth guide to the troubling world of bullying” (quotes by readers). Louise Hart Ed.D. (www.drlouisehart.com) is also the author of The Winning Family and On the Wings of Self-Esteem with co-author Kristen Caven (www.kristencaven.com). Learn more about bullying by perusing and subscribing to The Zorgos Reader: zorgos.wordpress.com.
What is physical child abuse?
It’s an injury resulting from physical aggression. Even if the injury was not intended, the act is considered physical abuse. The injury from physical child abuse may be the result of:
- Beating, slapping, or hitting.
- Pushing, shaking, kicking, or throwing.
- Pinching, biting, choking, or hair-pulling.
- Burning with cigarettes, scalding water, or other hot objects.
- Severe physical punishment.
Is physical punishment the same as physical abuse?
Physical abuse is an injury resulting from physical aggression. Physical punishment is the use of physical force with the intent of inflicting bodily pain, but not injury, for the purpose of correction or control. Physical punishment cPhysical punishment can easily get out of control and become physical abuse.
Some other specific types of physical child abuse are:
- Shaken Baby Syndrome – Shaking a baby or toddler can cause serious head injuries.
- Munchausen by Proxy Syndrome – Inducing medical illness in a child or wrongly convincing others that a child is sick is both dangerous and abusive.
- Drug use during pregnancy – Drug and alcohol use during pregnancy or lactation can be harmful to your child, leading to problems such as Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
Hundreds of thousands of children are physically abused each year by someone close to them, and thousands of children die from the injuries. For those who survive, the emotional scars are deeper than the physical scars.
Some Signs of Physical Child Abuse
- Burns, bite marks, cuts, bruises, or welts in the shape of an object.
- Resistance to going home.
- Fear of adults.
Child Maltreatment Deaths Highest in Industrialized World http://www.bbc.co.uk/go/em/fr/-/news/magazine-15193530
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