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Preventing abuse as a responsible adult

Updated on March 23, 2011

As parents from the minute a little one is born and becomes a part of our lives, our aim to nurture them, nourish them and see them grow into well balanced and healthy individuals. Each step and each moment is looked on with pride and we try as best as we can to make things easier and safe for them. It is important however to realize that you cannot be everywhere neither can you intrude into every aspect of their lives. What you can do is educate them about the right touch, right conversations, right interactions and the right way to go about things.

A major problem at schools, colleges, homes and just about any place is child abuse. Many a time it may not even be an obvious thing and it takes time for the child to register that they have been harmed or violated. There are nearly three quarters of a million kids who are abused yearly and these kids keep increasing in numbers as most of the time census indicates that they have had no previous history of it. The word child abuse conjures up images that we may not want to think about. However the greatest danger can come from the neglect of the parents, emotional abuse, physical abuse and psychological abuse. The last on the list is sexual abuse which rears its ugly head every now and then in torrid detail in the newspapers.

Many a time a family undergoing conflicts in the economic front or in their relationship can end up damaging the child much beyond its understanding. Neglecting a child completely, isolating them from social gatherings and events, economic crisis, inability to care for the child due to any number of reasons are all serious causes of this very grave problem. Kids often have experienced stunted growth and low levels of IQ from being isolated from interacting and learning with others socially and many tend to develop into serious misfits eventually. It takes years of therapy for a mental health practitioner to first convince the child of the fact that guilt is the wrong emotion to have in cases of abuse and then helping them to live better adjusted lives.

If you know of a child you can see is uncared for, if you have seen a little boy with way too many bruises or someone who seems to be falling every now and then make sure you get in touch with child protective services. You could be saving a whole family from ruin by doing this, however we do tend to end up with either overly busy lives to notice the details or feel like we just shouldn’t intrude into another family’s problems. Many of these kids are less than a year old and can barely understand what is happening to them, it is important to understand that no one deserves to be treated that way and to step up and report such events if you know of them in your neighborhood.


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