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Child Neglect and Abuse - The Shame and the Guilt

Updated on May 6, 2018
vocalcoach profile image

Audrey's burning desire to help others to respect and understand themselves led her to the study of psychology at UCLA.

Source

The Consequences of Child Abuse

If you are a victim of child abuse and neglect, you understand about shame. This shame and guilt remains throughout the victims life, manifesting itself in a variety of ways. What I want to make clear right here and now is, abuse is not your fault. There are legitimate reasons for the shame you carry:

  • Neglect - When a child is neglected, they feel they are unlovable because if they were lovable their parents wouldn't neglect them. As they grow and mature they find themselves putting up with poor treatment by others, believing that they, alone, brought it on themselves.
  • Emotional Abuse - This type of abuse is humiliating to the child. Some of the signs of emotional abuse include stuttering, low self-esteem, feeling unworthy of being loved and depression. Those, suffering from emotional abuse, desperately seek attention.
  • Sexual Abuse - This type of abuse causes the child to feel guilty and ashamed which can linger for the rest of their life. Confusion and distrust remain which can cause nightmares.
  • Physical Abuse - When a child is purposely, physically, injured or put at risk of harm by another person, the child is left with both physical and emotional scars. They are sometimes plagued by unusual fears. Feelings of low confidence escalate.

It's important to know that some children overcome emotional and physical abuse. This is especially true when the child has a strong support system to help them adapt to the abuse.

I Am Unlovable - It's My Fault

When children are restricted from love, they think it is their fault. They perceive themselves to be unlovable. Then they learn to live with shame. Children carry guilt because they think they are "bad." After all, if they were good then the parents would love them. It makes perfect sense to a young child.

When harshness and criticism are added to the situation, the child is learning that he is a disappointment. Kids learn exactly what they live. If they live with love, they grow up feeling loved and they can love in return. When they live a life of neglect and cruelty, they often express this abuse later in life by becoming co-dependent.

Combining all this with additional drama and possible violence, more self-blame burns deeper and deeper. What follows, for the child, is the development of the self-image. This erroneous blame becomes the child's belief system.

Even when a much-needed compliment comes, the child quickly and adamantly defends his position. Instead of replying "thank you" he questions his own worth by asking "do you really think so?" Or worse yet, he will assure the giver of the compliment that he's not worthy of the compliment by rejecting it completely.

This painful behavior is very sad. Children learn from a very tender age that they are loved, and most of that comes from trust. You will never gain trust from a child when you confuse them with your own emotions. It makes no sense to tell a child you love them followed by a severe slap in the face or abusive comment. This is not only confusing to the child, it's downright abusive as well.

So where is love? It is found in the nurturing, it is found in the warmth of loving arms, it is found in the power of words, it is found in the trust and joy of being a child growing up in a safe place..

Most of all, love is found by giving unconditional love and treating the child with respect.

Being Told We're "Bad" Damages Us Through Adulthood

Memories of child abuse can remain through adulthood. Trusting others can become a problem
Memories of child abuse can remain through adulthood. Trusting others can become a problem | Source

Child abuse casts a shadow the length of a lifetime.”

My Own Story About Living With Child Abuse

As a child she gave her all

trying to please her mother

though she stood but 3 feet tall

she takes care of her sister and brother


Living in fear of the screaming voice

that greeted her each day

She grew to realize she had no choice

No love would be coming her way


She started school at the age of five

trembling from head to toe

wanting to run away and hide

as fast as she could go

Where is Love?

But her beautiful teacher, Miss Butterfield

Held her close to her soft warm breast

Drying the tears that began to build

And soothing the pain in her chest


“I don’t want to go home, Miss Butterfield

Can I go home with you?”

Knowing that she could not yield

she did what she had to do


At home, the dishes were waiting

and ironing piled up high

no cookies for the taking

only little shoes to tie


Tip-toeing to her mother

She said, “I love you, so.”

“and I love you like no other

I just wanted you to know.”


Bedtime comes and with it dreams

A journey to forever-land

Where no one yells and no one screams

And no one ever raises a hand


The little child is sent a friend

A piano is the name

She sings and plays day after day

Music and joy become her game


Melodies come easily as she starts to play

Making music to fill her heart

at last she knows she has found her way

Her “friend” and she will never part

Today she gives thanks for her childhood

“Miss Butterfield” and music dear

And now when she looks in the mirror

It all becomes so clear


It took a challenging childhood

and a desperate need for love

It took some prayers and a child's voice

speaking to God above


She learned to give to others

with kindness and with song

The gift of unconditional love

to give her whole lifelong

How to Prevent Child Abuse and Alternatives to Unhealthy Discipline

Not all child abuse is intentional. And I'm not excusing the actions used that are abusive or the person inflicting the abuse. Not at all. However, there are many people who just don't realize that they are being abusive. They truly think that their behavior is justified. They mimic what they have learned from their own parents.

For these people as well as others who may be "in the dark" about preventing abuse on a child, here is a good tip to practice:

Never discipline a child when you are angry or upset. This rule is crucial to the prevention of abuse on a child. Use every bit of self-control you have and wait until you are in a calm state before issuing discipline.

Take a minute to think of what the word "disciple" means. A disciple is a follower of good. A disciple is also a teacher. A teacher evokes patience and understanding. I don't know about you, but I never learned a history lesson by being slapped in the face or hit on my back-side.

So what is the better alternative? Try using privileges to encourage good behavior:

  • Reduce or omit television time.
  • Limit the use of favorite games.
  • No cell phone privileges.
  • No sleep-overs.
  • Time-outs.

You know your child. Choose wisely when denying privileges and make the denial reasonable. This can help your child regain control and give them time to think about their behavior.

Spanking a Child is Abusive

Spanking is considered a form of child abuse.  There are better ways to teach children.
Spanking is considered a form of child abuse. There are better ways to teach children. | Source

Signs of Child Abuse And Neglect

The following signs may signal abuse or neglect. It is our duty to report any of these signs:

  • Inadequate adult supervision.
  • Shows sudden changes in behavior and in school performance.
  • Shows up early for school and stays late not wanting to go home.
  • Has trouble concentrating or other signs of learning problems that are not connected to a physical or psychological cause.
  • Always being watchful as if something bad is about to happen.
  • Hasn't received help for physical or medical problems that have been brought to the attention of the parent.
  • Comes to school with no lunch or money, or a ticket for lunch, day after day.
  • Wets their pants.
  • Isolates themselves at play time.
  • Cries for seemingly no reason.
  • Stutters, excessive fidgeting, falling asleep in class are other signs of abuse and neglect.
  • Being demanding and destructive.
  • Showing excessive fear.
  • The need to inflict pain.

The need of deeply hurt children to inflict pain is a perverted and angry attempt to elicit love. Any way of "having it out" with someone is more tolerable than indifference and neglect.

She's a Victim of an Abusive Childhood

Signs of child abuse took it's toll. Today, my sister still "acts out" as a result of emotional abuse.
Signs of child abuse took it's toll. Today, my sister still "acts out" as a result of emotional abuse. | Source

Her Name Is Heather

Take a minute to look at the photo above. What do you see? Are there any signs of a happy childhood? You say "she's smiling", but the smile is forced and expected. Look into her eyes, void of all expression, as though she is lost, somewhere in another time. My sister was born an innocent, precious, beautiful, little baby.

This pure little child grew up to become an angry, verbally abusive, confused, woman, who lived with jealousy in her heart.

I tried to protect her during our childhood and failed. I tried again to protect her during our adult life and failed again. I reached out to her for the love I missed so many years ago. Most of the time I felt worse about myself after talking with her.

Yet, my love for her has never diminished. I would do anything in the world to see my sister happy.

I know, with all my heart, one day we will be united, and I will have my sister back once more. We will greet each other, in a perfect place, with supreme joy, surrounded by love.

Parents and caregivers, wake up! The screaming, spankings, punishments, might seem like an instant to you - but to the young victims it will last for years.

Common Signs Of Behavior That May Indicate Child Abuse

(click column header to sort results)
   
School performance  
   
A drop in grades and homework  
   
 
Withdrawal
 
Avoiding family members or strangers
 
 
Bed Wetting
 
Look for abrupt changes
 
 
Thmb Sucking
 
Also combined with withdrawal
 
 
Destructive Behavior
 
This is a way for neglected children to get attention
 
 
Excessive Cursing
 
Cursing for the child is the sharpest weapen of all.
 
 
When a child won't speak
 
Whe the child doesn not speak theparent has to be with him in an individual rapport, bent with all one's senses to receive the message which the child makes an intense effort to conceal by freezing up.
 

Summary: Children Are Our Hope For the Future

Each one of us is responsible for the safety and protection of children. Recognizing and being aware of child abuse is a place to start. Child abuse includes physical, emotional, sexual and pure neglect inflicted by a parent or caretaker.

My own abuse was mostly emotional with a little physical thrown in. If I had a choice I would prefer the physical. When a parent verbally terrorizes the child continually, and severely criticizes the child or fails to express any affection or nurturing, they are abusing the child.

As the child grows to adulthood, feelings of shame, guilt, low self-esteem accompany the inner-child for the rest of their life.

For the victim, one of the best ways to thrive, in spite of the damaged esteem, is to carve out a life of service and love for others. The more we give, the more our need for love becomes realized, and we can thrive and become a light for others.

Pay attention and be involved in a child's life. Listen and show interest. My own kindergarten teacher, Miss Butterfield, taught me that I am lovable. She is responsible for my level of self-confidence today. Bless all the teachers who take the time to stand up for the rights of children.

Children are our legacy and hope for the future.

Statistics of Child Abuse Fatalities For 2012

For  2012, a nationally estimated 1,640 children died from abuse and neglect at a rate of 2.20 per 100,000 children in the population
For 2012, a nationally estimated 1,640 children died from abuse and neglect at a rate of 2.20 per 100,000 children in the population | Source

90% of victimization is from a family member.

Do You Know Someone Who Has Survived Child Abuse?

See results

“Childhood should be carefree, playing in the sun; not living a nightmare in the darkness of the soul.”

― Dave Pelzer, A Child Called "It"

© 2011 Audrey Hunt

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    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      6 months ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Peggy Woods

      Absolutely agree that some people should never become parents. However, even though my informative years were laced with abuse, I'm grateful for the lessons I've learned and the compassion I feel for others.

      The guilt one carries, from the abuse, the self-blame, embarrassment, and shame is something the victim carries for a lifetime. It's been difficult to share this now. My hope is to show others that it's okay to live with these feelings, and by sharing our experiences, we may help others.

      Thank you, Peggy.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      6 months ago from Houston, Texas

      So very sorry to hear that you suffered child abuse Audrey. So happy that your teacher Mrs. Butterfield was there to show you love. Also glad that you found solace with a piano and song. Thanks for pointing out signs of child abuse. Everyone should be aware and do their best to protect innocent children from becoming victims. I agree with what one person wrote as a comment. Some people should never become parents!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      6 months ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Dear Chitrangada

      Your sweet comments are such a welcome. I admit that it wasn't easy to reveal my past experiences with child abuse, but after reading the comments here, I'm glad I've shared my experiences.

      I'm glad to know you read older comments. I do that too. This is the first hub that's ever been unfeatured. I was surprised and took steps immediately to edit and add more content and photos.

      I hope this hub will soon be featured once again. Thank you for your constant support. You're the best!

      Audrey

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 

      6 months ago from New Delhi, India

      Beautiful and touching article about such an important issue!

      Child abuse happens and very few have the courage to admit that this happened with them. Hats off to you on writing about it, thereby spreading awareness.

      I can see that it’s an old hub, with many wonderful comments. I can even read the comments of those hubbers, who are no longer active on HubPages. And it’s sad!

      It really hurts a lot, when an old and well performing hub get unfeatured, as I read in your forum post. I hope it gets featured soon.

      Few of my best perforning hubs got unfeatured, when I updated/ edited them, just to float the capsules, to full width. And in spite of my best efforts to edit them, in accordance with the new set of rules mentioned by HubPages, they are still unfeatured. Every time I get an automated email that it has Spammy elements. There is no explanation about what they really want me to remove or add.

      I just wish that your article gets featured once again.

      Thanks for sharing and good luck to you!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      6 months ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Ruby

      Your comments mean so much to me. I can't thank you enough. You are so kind to support my hub and assure me that it's well-written. Thank you and God bless you as well.

      Audrey

      Nikki Khan

      Thank you so much, my friend, for supporting me with this hub. I've made some changes and done some editing and grateful for the opportunity to bring it up to par.

      You are so kind to take the time to read my article on Child Abuse and give me this nice comment.

      Happy Easter to you, dear Nikki.

      Audrey

    • nikkikhan10 profile image

      Nikki Khan 

      6 months ago from London

      This is a great hub on serious issue of child abuse, a parent can abuse a child, this seems to be the most horrible picture ever seen.

      The article does justice with it’s topic, everything is explained very well, It should get featured again.

      And very happy Easter Audrey, Bless you dear!

    • profile image

      Ruby 

      6 months ago

      Where was I when this was written? It took courage to write about your personal childhood and abuse. I will never live long enough to understand a mother who abuses her child. You asked for help improving this hub, and for the life of me, I see nothing to add to this well written and very detailed piece. It should be featured continuously. God bless you my dear friend...

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      4 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      fpher48 You have shared something so personal, so painful with me. This means everything to the little child who grew up thinking she was all alone in the world. You, dear Paula, understand and know what words alone cannot begin to describe.

      "The key to Freedom." I like this.

      You hold a special place in my heart ~Audrey

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 

      4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Audrey.....Please believe me without hesitation that I am able to fully relate to and genuinely appreciate that "lock-up" of things inside of us for years.......decades.

      The need for ultimate release....is far more profound than even "we," the keeper of the lock, can imagine, unless and until we have discovered the key to freedom............Much love, Audrey. Peace, Paula

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      4 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      AudreyHowitt ~ I've locked this issue inside of me for years. Then I made a decision to share my experience hoping that, like you say, even one person will somehow be helped. Thank you, lovely lady!

      teaches12345 I kept this abuse a secret all my life until now. Shame goes along with the neglect. I'm sure as a teacher you are on the look-out for this type of thing. Thank you.

      Hello Sha (bravewarrior) ~ All types of abuse are just horrific. But child abuse is the worst as children can't defend themselves. I've come forward at long last and now I'm free. Thank you so much ~ Audrey

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      4 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Angela Brummer You are such a dear. Please forgive me for taking so long to respond. Hope you are doing just great!

      fpherj48 ~ Hi gorgeous. You possess an understanding heart. What a magnificent thing that is. With child neglect and abuse, someone has to come along in the family line and put a stop to it. And you understand this which makes me just filled with goose bumps. My heart joins your heart in celebration! Thank you a million and more for your caring support. I feel so loved ~ Audrey

      Harishprasad - Yes, dear Miss Butterfield was exceptionally loving and very kind. A gift from God. Thank you for your tender words. They come from your generous heart. ~ Audrey

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      4 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Ruthi - It's a wonderful thing to find you here, reading my hub and leaving such stirring comments. Thank you and I hope to see you again, and soon. ~ Audrey

      Sunshine625 ~ You are a beautiful mother, grandmother and friend. I like how you started your comments with "Nothing makes me as mad and sad as child abuse." Don't you just wonder what's wrong with some people? Your entire family are so lucky to have you!

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      4 years ago from Central Florida

      Audrey, thank you for sharing your story. I will never understand child abuse, yet it happens every day. Thank God for Miss Butterfield and the piano. Fortunately, you found someone who showed you your worth. You could have gone in many different directions, but you chose the piano and music as your panacea. God bless you.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      4 years ago

      A very touching look on the subject of abuse. I hate to hear of it. Your advice is excellent and will help people to know how to handle the temptation. I love the Oliver song you posted, it goes with your post so well.

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 

      4 years ago from California

      Such a heart wrenching read--yes--I hope that this helps even just one person who was abused--to find solace and strength--

    • Harishprasad profile image

      Harish Mamgain 

      4 years ago from New Delhi , India

      vocalcoach, wish there were billions likes of Miss Butterfileds on this planet. Very touching and educative hub, my friend. I love all kids and they are such a source of happiness and peace. To abuse them is to abuse oneself and deprive oneself of real pleasure and love. Thank you. Voted with all my heart.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 

      4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Audrey...Well, thank you. I've had my cathartic cry for the week. This is an issue near and dear to my heart. A miracle happens when someone who has learned better.....does better and puts an end to the cycle. It's fairly clear to me that you are a miracle worker. Bless your precious and loving heart....UP UIAB......pinned & tweeted.

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 

      4 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Nothing makes me as mad and sad as a child being abused. Whether verbally, emotionally, physically or sexually. Children look up to adults, they should NEVER, EVER, EVER be hurt in any way. So very sad.

    • profile image

      Ruthi 

      4 years ago

      As you well know, as we share our personal childhood stories of a not-so-perfect upbringing, we may help another come to terms with such a childhood of their own. Even better, we may save one child from the same experience. Bravo to you for such a touching poetic view of a child who needed such a helping hand of love. Thank you for taking a stand to "arise against abuse" (as I often write about myself).

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Hello Audrey, dear friend ~ I was just wondering about your own "losses" and if you have written about any one of those in your magnificent poetry?

      Thank you for all that you give to me in both your writing and following. Your support is a gift to me. I thank you so much!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Dear Mekenzie - You and I share an understanding of the fear and loneliness that accompanies an abusive childhood. Having lived through this, we can both be proud to have been chosen to end this "generational curse" as you so aptly put it. I'm so deeply sorry that you were unloved as a sweet, beautiful child. At the same time, I am truly grateful to find you and know that there is someone who understands and has so much empathy.

      Thank you dearest one and big hugs to you too. Audrey

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Hello Dear Kelly ~ Thank you for coming back to read this again.

      Syd must be playing pretty well by now. Bless her sweet heart. And how beautiful for you to enjoy her practicing and the way you encourage her. I love the sound of the flute.

      I'm so touched that you would have loved to hear me play the piano as a child. I will send you a CD of piano music when it is complete:) And I can feel your precious arms around me - so warm and cuddly and full of love!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Christy - Parenting little ones is the greatest of all blessings and the most important of all responsibilities. I feel your sincere love for others. Thank you.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Thank you dear Debbie for your lovely comments. It's always inspiring to see you. Blessings and hugs.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Dear Bill - Your precious comments are always "sugar for my soul." (Just made that up.) See how you inspire me? So pleased that you read this. That little girl is filled with joy and love today!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Dear Ruchira - If parents just realized that how they treat a child influences that child for the rest of their life. I like your prayer and repeat it each night and every morning. Thank you!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Thank you rahul for leaving such beautiful comments. I appreciate your feelings about both my poetry and child abuse. You are very sweet!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Thank you friend for your touching comments. We must all be aware of abuse upon children and protect them when we can. Blessings to you.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Thank you very much for reading my poem and leaving your comment. I truly appreciate

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Hi Ardie - I remember your last comment as I was so touched. It's wonderful seeing you again and I would love to hear from you anytime. Hugs to you!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      5 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      midget38 - Thank you for being touched by my poem. You too, have touched me.

      Ian - Your words so full of understanding mean so much. I am looking forward to your poems and know I will learn from them. I like how you recognized that this came from my heart. It truly did.

      Thank you for your compassion and most of all, thank you for being here.

      justateacher - Yes, living with neglect is sad. I would love to protect all children from abuse. Miss Butterfield was an absolute angel. Thank you.

      Vellur - Thank you kindly for finding my poem beautifully expressed. So nice of you to take the time to read and comment.

      Rajan - You have asked a good question. Why do parents abuse small children when they can't fathom the mind of an adult? Very unfair. I suppose some parents learn from their own parents that this is the way to raise children.

      These precious children belong to God and deserve respect, protection and to be nurtured.

      Thank you my friend for your support and for passing this along.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      6 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Thank you dear Josh - Your comments ring so very true! I pray every night for the children. There is only one great source to protect a child from abuse and neglect. That is our Heavenly Father (as I call him.) Let us all remember the children of the world through our thoughts and prayers. Thank you my friend.

      Docmo - What a generous and lovely gesture for the children in India. I'm sure your dear mother is very pleased and proud of you all. You are doing God's work andtruly making a difference. A beautiful and kind thing to do. Thank you for your generous rating and sharing.

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 

      6 years ago from California

      When a parent damages a child this way, it is for life. The child can compensate for a lot of the deprivation, but unless that child continues to allow themselves to feel that loss as an adult, they run the risk of repeating the pattern with their own children. I am reminded today of my own losses----

    • Mekenzie profile image

      Susan Ream 

      6 years ago from Michigan

      The pain of the child who is unloved is unbearable. You have so beautifully written the heart of a little girl carrying the weight of the world on her shoulders.

      I relate to this little girl. Growing up unloved in a house of screaming, cursing and abuse. God came to me in the midst of it all and opened my eyes to His love for me. He is my life and He has given me a family who I love with all of my heart. The generational curse ends here.

      I don't know if people truly understand the difference they can make in a child's life .. a smile, a hug, a kind word goes deep into a child's heart and remains as a balm to the many hurts hidden there.

      Beautiful writing .. hopefully will spur people on to open their eyes and hearts to the little ones.

      Hugs to you Dearheart,

      Mekenzie

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 

      6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      I still love your poem and enjoyed revisiting:)

      Syd LOVED playing the flute! She signed up for next year and I adore hearing her practice. I'd have loved to hear you playing piano as a child - I bet it was priceless to hear!!

      Oh I just wanna give you a BIG hug!

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 

      6 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Beautiful, moving, and so much more. A read that really makes us stop and put our arms around those we care about xx

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 

      6 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      OH wow!!!!this is so beautiful and sad and so true so many times... and Thank God for people like Mrs. Butterfield.. God uses people like this..God Bless you.. He is using you

      Sharing and pinning it is so good

      Debbie

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      6 years ago from Olympia, WA

      What an incredibly beautiful piece of work this is....so sad and yet filled with triumph....love conquers all, and you have captured that message so well. Bravo my friend! This was a joy to read!

    • Ruchira profile image

      Ruchira 

      6 years ago from United States

      wow...Awesome poem Audrey.

      No one has the right to ruin a childhood not even the parents. Beautifully expressed and I pray that innocence of all children be maintained and loved...Amen!

      Voted up and sharing it across

    • rahul0324 profile image

      Jessee R 

      6 years ago from Gurgaon, India

      Wonderful piece of poetry. I was moved to the core..

      Some children are unlucky not to get their fair share of love...

      I feel for such children and your poem makes me feel more....

      I cannot believe how some parents can be so callous.. so shrewd.. but then they are there...

      Great poetry... heart- rending

    • tsarnaudova profile image

      Tsvetana Kodjabasheva 

      6 years ago from Sofia, Bulgaria

      Some people should never become parents. So much evil is unleashed upon the heads of the innocent. Thank god there are true hearts, loving hearts standing for these children.

      Very sad, but true hub. Beautiful poem.

      Thank you, vocalcoach.

    • Angela Brummer profile image

      Angela Brummer 

      6 years ago from Lincoln, Nebraska

      This is so beautiful! I almost cried. Thinking about this can make it hard to sleep at night!

    • addingsense profile image

      Akhil S Kumar 

      6 years ago from kerala

      a heartfelt poem truly

    • Ardie profile image

      Sondra 

      6 years ago from Neverland

      aaah I commented on this one 4 months ago and when I saw it pop up on my feed I knew I had to read it again. It got to me even more the second time through - sharing.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      6 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Very touching poem. I'm glad to see the child get a lifelong friend and is happy. I wonder why parents are abuse children since such a small child does not fathom the mind of an adult. You are very correct in saying that the child feels its his/her fault. Children are a form of God; hatred free and loving.

      Voted up and beautiful. I can't help but share this touching poem.

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 

      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      You are very welcome vocal, anytime! :)

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      6 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Thank you josh3418 - Being a teacher especially to the very young is a powerful position. It brings with it a responsibility to nurture and protect the innocence of children. This teacher in my poem reached out and filled a child's need for love. What greater gift! Thank you my friend for your comments and the votes and sharing.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 

      6 years ago from Dubai

      Beautifully expressed and touched my heart. An emotionally moving poem.

    • justateacher profile image

      LaDena Campbell 

      6 years ago from Somewhere Over The Rainbow - Near Oz...

      What a sad poem...what a sad life....too many children lead thus sad life...thank Good for all the Miss Butterfield's in the world.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      6 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Fennelseed - " If only it was a given that all children are loved and cherished by their own parents." Powerful! Thank you dear friend for your beautiful addition to my poem through your comments. I second every word. Hugs to you. (Tomorrow marks the 4th year without my Toddd. It feels like yesterday.)

    • Ian Dabasori Hetr profile image

      Ian D Hetri 

      6 years ago from Papua New Guinea

      All I can say is the hub swept me off my feet. I love how you drew the pictures with your words. Its sad, yet so powerful and carries untold truths about human misseries, fears and tears behind the cover of parent hood.

      What makes it different is how you said it. I love poetry and write it from my heart and enjoy poems from others that comes from their heart. Poetry displays inner most hopes and fears and beuty as seen from the poets lenses.

      Great hub. Hope you check my poems out.

      Vote up and sharing.

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 

      6 years ago from Singapore

      Awesome poetry, stirs the heart! Voted up!

    • Docmo profile image

      Mohan Kumar 

      6 years ago from UK

      Audrey- this is so beautiful and emotive. You've done a wonderful tribute not only to those children in need of love and care but for all those who give this unconditionally and make those children feel loved. Child neglect is a terrible thing and in my line of work I come across it more often than I care to see. When my mom passed five years ago, we gave an orphanage in South India a sum of money to celebrate an annual remembrance and give the children a mini feast as well as new clothes... the look in their faces is worth its weight in gold! voted up/across!

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 

      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      This is very thought provoking, I totally agree with Fennelseed. Vocal you have done a terrific job here! It is so sad to know that this goes on every day behind the scenes. This is hidden in public but made known in private. And the pooor children have no way to fend for themselves. You have touched on a deep topic is such a wonderful way!

      Voted up, useful, beautiful, and awesome, and sharing!

    • Fennelseed profile image

      Annie Fenn 

      6 years ago from Australia

      A beautiful poem of a neglected child getting a break and beating the odds. So sad that there many children who do not know a parents love. We cannot take away the rights of men and women to procreate, but if only a condition be put on that right, to love and nurture one's children, and an adherence to abide by that condition or to forfeit your children to a family that can provide the love and nurturing that children need. If only it was a given that all children are loved and cherished by their own parents. Unfortunately that isn't reality and reality is way too harsh and cruel.

      This is a beautiful thought provoking hub, my votes and best wishes to you Audrey, and sharing!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      6 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Dear Marcy, Ardie and Audrey -

      I want to thank you three sweet ladies for leaving your heart-felt comments The up side to this sad time is that the little girl wouldn't have become who she is today without her childhood.

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 

      6 years ago from California

      This feels very personal and deep---such an intimate portrait.

    • Ardie profile image

      Sondra 

      6 years ago from Neverland

      I have to fight not to cry at the injustices spoken in your poem. Thank goodness for the gift to the little girl so she could find beauty and hope in life.

    • Marcy Goodfleisch profile image

      Marcy Goodfleisch 

      6 years ago from Planet Earth

      So beautifully written, and such an important message for us to remember. Voted up and beautiful.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Teresa - Oh, I love the symphony - last year my handsome son took me to "Beethovens" 9th with full chorus. It was a birthday gift and a dream of mine. Next time we go - I will look for you. How exciting! Thank you, my new and dear friend!

    • eventsyoudesign profile image

      eventsyoudesign 

      7 years ago from Nashville, Tennessee

      I have seen what child abuse does. It is sad when a parent denies that it has happened to their child and refuses to help that child. I am glad I found you. I am also from Nashville, Tennessee and I work at the Nashville Symphony. Thanks for sharing. Teresa

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      saddlerider - Child abuse lasts a lifetime. Regardless of how much we grow and change, long after the fact, we still carry those scars. I join you, dear, sweet man as your tears release dark memories from the past. You are a radiant light and one that I love to follow. God bless you and your small child within, with continual peace, love ever-lasting and your own private rainbow. Hugs back!

    • saddlerider1 profile image

      saddlerider1 

      7 years ago

      Absolutely stunning, tear falling, brilliant scribe my friend. It tore at the core of my soul, I was that little boy and my sisters were that little girl. We all cried together for want of love that we never received in great measure at home. How sad to watch abuse, be part of it, witness to fear and pain. I pray this little girl became a beautiful, stunning, loving, caring human being as an adult. Hugs

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      fiddleman - Yes, Miss Butterfield was a life-line of love and will never be forgotten. Thank you for your beautiful comments fiddleman. They mean so much. vocalcoach

      Dear tonymac - Loving and caring for children are such a blessing. And it takes less energy to be a caring, kind person, than it does to be angry and abusive. Thank you dear man for your generous, sweet comments. Blessings to you! vocalcoach

      Micky Dee - Hello, sweet and precious friend. I love your remarks and the gentleman who wrote them! :)

      Prasetio, my friend - The children you teach are very blessed. You epitomize the gentle, kind and caring teacher for others to follow. I love your comments. Your new avatar is great. You are so handsome! Much love,,, vocalcoach

      SupportMed. - Writing this was not an easy thing to do, but somehow I managed. Not all of us have an "alice-in-wonderland-childhood". My hope is that my poem will bring understanding and awareness to those who have lived with abuse, and an appreciation for the lucky ones who have not. Thanks, my friend. vocalcoach

      toknowinfo - Yes, I really did. T'was the only way I could write about it. Thank you so much for your comments. And, I love your hubs!

      erin62 - True, rhymimg isn't always easy, but when it works, its the best. So you love the piano too? How wonderful. I'm very glad that we met erin. :)

    • erinb62 profile image

      Erin Buttermore 

      7 years ago from Laconia

      Amazing poem. Rhyming is something I struggle with, and you do a great job with it. It also reminds me of my love of piano, and how playing seemed to make me whole and happy. I intend to keep reading more of your wonderful work.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 

      7 years ago

      You evoked a lot of emotions with this poem. Beautifully written. Thank you for sharing your talents.

    • Support Med. profile image

      Support Med. 

      7 years ago from Michigan

      This is an awesome poem. Realistic. The pics and words definitely tug at your heart, especially when she told her mother that she loves her, OMG!! Beautiful!! v/r

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Oh, dear RealHousewife - It is you who are unbelievable and I can't tell you how much I am blessed for meeting you. How marvelous that your Sydney will be learning the flute next year - one of the most beautiful of all instruments. The flute requires perfect control over breathing, so be sure you read my article on breath control and teach diaphragmatic breathing to her. That will really give her an edge. Your oldest daughter and my oldest grandson are both interested in going into law enforcement. Great! Love to you and yours, dear one. vocalcoach :)

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Fay...Welcome, dear lady. So happy that we have met here on hubpages. Your words are so beautiful. And if you'll excuse me, I will run over to your profile and check out one of your great hubs. :) vocalcoach

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 

      7 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      And you have:) Sydney told me today she is going to play the flute next year in 6th grade band! I am elated - I am going to learn with her! I'm looking forward to it as much as she is I think! The oldest daughter told me she thinks she wants to be a police officer - she is a criminal justice major. You really are a treasure - it's hard to believe you are real:-) too good to be true!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Dear RealHousewife - You warm my heart as I read your words, so filled with truth. You are the ideal mother and your beautiful children are so very blessed. Music is inspiring and the younger children are introduced to its variety of arrangements and colors, the more it will always be a deep part of them, as it is with you. Bless you, dear friend, with joy, peace and love!

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 

      7 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Vocalcoach - I was looking for someone who had some kind words to read - I knew I would find it here. I am so glad for my visit. I am also a music lover to the Nth degree - I will have music on all day - played in band - and I want my children to be inspired by it as well. Thank you for being THE voice:)

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Docmo - How beautiful your comments are. Like reading poetry on a lovely spring day. I admire your gift. Thank you. :)

    • profile image

      Fay Paxton 

      7 years ago

      This grabbed my heart and squeezed. Exquisite!

      Up and beautiful

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      theseus - Yes, this truly came from my heart and soul and I thank you for seeing this. You have made my heart smile. Thank you.

    • Docmo profile image

      Mohan Kumar 

      7 years ago from UK

      This sad and beautiful work resonates of the aching heart of a child and the kindness that shines on it. Loved it!

    • theseus profile image

      theseus 

      7 years ago from philippines

      This is an expressive hub. You really poured your heart and soul into this, I believe. Brilliant!! God bless.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      acaetnna - Children can be wonderful examples to us, if we watch, look and listen. This particular child took the lemons she was given and made lemonade as best as she could. You recognize how important the teacher was and the role that she playes. We never know when a child is hurting - we must always be aware and ready to be a soft place for a child in need. Thank you, my dearest friend!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      fossillady - Lessons are taught to us in many different ways. The important thing is - that we learn to be good and loving people. Thanks so much!

    • acaetnna profile image

      acaetnna 

      7 years ago from Guildford

      What a truly stunning poem. I loved it and so felt for that poor child, but what a wonderful loving and inspirational teacher she had. To have a gift of unconditional love, yes if each one of us had this wouldn't this world be such a fantastic place? Voted up and pressing those tabs as always.

    • Fossillady profile image

      Kathi 

      7 years ago from Saugatuck Michigan

      Aah, a happy ending from the hearts of babes! Swinging votes across!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      ...and God Bless You too, dear kimh039! You are a huge inspiration to me. I love your hubs and appreciate your integrity. You are quite right...this was not an easy poem to write. There is always a bit of "shame" attached to a confession like this. I know that you understand completely where I'm coming from and I thank you, dearest friend!

    • kimh039 profile image

      Kim Harris 

      7 years ago

      chills and tears here vocalcoach. That was amazing! Very expressive and well articulated. A lot of effort went into that! Thank you vocalcoach...and God bless you:)

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      saket71 - Your words are perhaps the most beautiful and visual I have heard. I thank you, my nfew friend for your generous comments and your support. Peace and love...

    • saket71 profile image

      saket71 

      7 years ago from Delhi, India

      Beautiful is the only word which comes to mind, though it falls little short in meeting the ethereal nature of the poem, like refreshing drops of water touching the face of a weary man on the shore of a sea as the waves hits the rocky earth.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      polIce - Yes, your right, child abuse is very sad. It is also very real, unfortunately. We all must be aware of it and step up to the plate when we can. Thank you, my friend for visiting, commenting and rating. Have a beautiful day!

    • pol1ce profile image

      Paulo Pta 

      7 years ago from the Right Place

      Just beatiful (also a bit sad)

      Vote UP for you vocalcoach

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      carrie - Yes, child abuse is so sad. It just breaks my heart. I so appreciate your comments. I also hope you are continuing to heal and improve carrie. Love to you.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      breakfastpop - Thank you pop, for voting up and awesome. I appreciate it, so very much. What you say is so true. How many little children are abused with no one to help them? Very, very sad. Hopefully, someone will read my hub and realize that either they or someone else they know is guilty of this and change. My best to you, dear pop.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Hello = Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment. Child abuse is so very sad. It turns my stomach every time I hear about it going on.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Aris - Yes, child abuse is very sad. How I wish I had the power to end it. Thank you for visiting and for your kind words.

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 

      7 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Dear friend, vocalcoach. You drove my imagination to the land of child. This is so sweet. I can't say anything. You made this poem so beautiful. Child is always innocent and they have pure heart. Thanks for writing this. Vote up as usual. God bless you!

      Love and peace,

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Ashlie, my sweet new friend...when the time comes and I am called "home", one of the first things I will do, is send to you the biggest, warmest of hugs which you will feel with every fiber of your being. And with the angels guiding me, you will feel all the love you were denied as a child. Thank you for reading my poem twice. Stay near by.

    • AskAshlie3433 profile image

      AskAshlie3433 

      7 years ago from WEST VIRGINIA

      I had to read it once more. Take care.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      epigramman - How good it feels to read your touching, kind words. You are able to paint like an artist with your beautiful words. Oh, how you continually inspire me to write! You are my muse, my guardian angel...my friend.

      BTW - the A Williams video, makes my heart dance. Thank you, wonderful man.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      nighthag - It has taken me a very long time to "share" some of my childhood memories. I suppose it has to do with trust. My hubpage family is both supportive and accepting, without judgement. A type of unconditional love. . . and you, nighthag are a part of the safe connectiveness I feel. Thank you.

    • nighthag profile image

      K.A.E Grove 

      7 years ago from Australia

      This brought a tear to my eye, But i am so glad that she found a way to express herself and love, a beautiful piece, I am in awe

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 

      7 years ago

      ..well this is the kind of deep and heartfelt writing that I would only expect from someone like you - and thanks so very much for the videos and the cards - I am indeed a lucky man to be in your blessed company.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Denise - Such beautiful words that give me comfort and a sense of peace. I find writing about my experiences therapeutic. This is the first time I have shared information about my childhood. Oh yes...would love to join you in a cup of tea and girl talk. Thank you my friend.

    • AskAshlie3433 profile image

      AskAshlie3433 

      7 years ago from WEST VIRGINIA

      Wow, that sounds so familiar to me, almost like my life. Such a sad state of mind, but a beautiful poem. So many, fell to understand what is seen through a child's eyes. How painful it could be to them. Great Hub Vocal!

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