Tag Archives: abuse victims

Battered Child Syndrome

battered child syndrome

The battered child syndrome is a form of child abuse. It is a clinical condition in young children who have experienced severe physical abuse, which often leads to permanent injuries or death. The perpetrator could be anyone – it could be a parent, guardian, relative, neighbor or even a total stranger.

The battered child syndrome should be considered on any child that evidently shows signs of bone fracture, subdural hematoma, failure to thrive, swellings of soft tissues and/or bruising. It should be considered to any child who has developed a degree of trauma due to variance and occurrence of abuse; it should be considered to any child who had died because of child abuse.

Psychiatric factors of battered child syndrome play an important in the pathogenesis of the disorder. Physicians who evaluate abused children are required to conduct a full assessment of the situation and guarantee that the repetition of such traumatic experience will never be allowed.

Battered Children Cases

Keanu Williams. Keanu was a 2-year old child who died in the hands of his ‘monster’ mother who is now paying for her crime in jail today. The toddler suffered from 37 different injuries that included bite marks, a fractured skull and a fist-sized tear in the stomach… he was definitely beaten to death. A post-mortem examination showed that he was repeated hit by a stick or rod which caused him to die from internal bleeding. The judge found Keanu’s mother, Rebecca Shuttleworth, guilty of four counts of child cruelty. ‘He was a defenseless child and it was your duty to protect him. Instead you beat him so severely he died a lingering death from his injuries a day or so later. You have also been convicted of cruelty by failing to summon the medical aid he so badly needed.’ These are just some of the statements that Mr. Justice Spencer told Rebecca Shuttleworth. He even added a tribute to the child by saying, ‘He was a delightful little boy described as a real character, a little entertainer who remained cheerful despite everything.’ It is truly unimaginable what Keanu Williams had to suffer from the outburst of violence of his own mother.

Lauren Kavanaugh. This young girl was tortured beyond imagination by her mother and stepfather. She was given back to her birth mother when she was 20-month old and from then on, she suffered 6 years of torture and starvation. She became known as ‘the girl in the closet’; locked away for so long in the back room of a mobile home. When she was rescued in the year 2001, she only weighed 25.6 pounds at 8 years old. The doctors at Children’s Medical Center Dallas said that she was damaged in ways that they have never seen. She had suffered from extreme depression and developed bipolar disorder… She had undergone all the necessary treatments – years of psychotherapy and hundreds of doctors’ visits. Lauren had indeed suffered a case of extreme child abuse and it is expected that she will have lifelong of emotional problems, long nights of tears and terror, fits of rage… She has suffered a great deal, losing her six key years of growth and development… She does not know her ABC’s, she wasn’t potty-trained, she doesn’t know how to hold a pencil and she doesn’t even know what it’s like to be in the sun. Fortunately, today, Lauren is surviving and thriving… With the help of her treatments and support from her loving adoptive parents, Sabrina and Bill Kavanaugh, Lauren is now talking more, eager to exercise and she shows more interest in learning new things.

Terrell Peterson. He was a 5-year old boy who lived in Atlanta Georgia who was beaten to death. Terrell only weighed 29 pounds and his body was full of cuts, bruises and burns when the authorities recovered his body. His mother was taking drugs while she was pregnant. Terrell’s parents would lock him up in a bedroom during weekends and denied him food. The complaints against his mother led social caseworkers to place Terrell and his siblings, who were also abused in the same way Terrell was, with their blood relatives. However, Terrell was not able to go with his siblings, he was left in the custody of Pharina Peterson – the grandmother of his half-siblings. Another child living in the home of Peterson said that Terrell was tied up often and his nourishment was a far cry from being proper. He was also allegedly burned by Peterson for telling the authorities about her abusive acts; one of Terrell’s teachers in school noticed he wasn’t walking right and inspected his feet only to find that they were burned to the point that it needed skin grafts. The authorities arrested Pharina Peterson and she was indicted on misdemeanor charges.

Stop School Bullying

school bullying

What is School Bullying?

This type of bullying takes place in an educational setting; it takes different forms such as physical, sexual, verbal or emotional. The following are various definitions of school bullying:

  • The intention to harm which means the act is done deliberately and not accidental.
  • Bullying causes the victim to experience distress; he or she can suffer from mild to severe psychological, social and/or physical trauma.
  • Bullying is repetitive; it has the possibility to happen more than once.
  • It involves inequity wherein the bully claims or believes that he or she has more ‘power’ than the victim.
  • It is confrontational and involves aggressive behaviors.

 

Victims and Bullies

School bullying is a common social problem in schools and other educational establishments today. Based on a research conducted by the American Psychological Association, up to 80% of the students may experience bullying at one point in during their education.

School bullying can happen to anyone! This is regardless of age, gender, religion, socioeconomic standing and grade level. However, children who come from a lower socioeconomic background are more prone to bullying than those who come from well-off households.

Moreover, the rate of bullying is significantly higher with homosexual students than heterosexual students. Some even experience an ‘extension’ to school bullying as they continue to be harassed online through aggressive emails and instant messages. A survey done in the year 2013 shows that 20% of the high school students in the US are bullied in school, 15% are harassed online while 8% of students who are between the age of 12 and 18 are continuously bullied every week.

Research suggests that bullies are individuals who experience aggression or violence at home; they are usually people who are diagnosed with depression, anxiety or ADHD. School-aged bullies are said to have a mental health disorder and poor theory of mind. They are usually morally disengaged and are inclined to using egocentric reasoning strategies.

 

Effects of School Bullying

Some people think that bullying is a phase in life that everyone naturally goes through. However, this reasoning doesn’t justify the fact that this abusive act can cause severe damage to the victims. Some children do not accept school bullying and they stand up for themselves, while others are not brave enough and they end up unhappy and afraid. School bullying can affect both the victim and the bully:

Victims

  • They may suffer from mild to severe physical and/or mental health problems.
  • They may become depressed and anxious; they may suffer from sleeping and eating disorders and refuse to participate in daily activities.
  • They may lose interest in school and begin to perform poorly in academic activities; some even end up dropping out of school.
  • A number of reports have shown that school bullying can lead victims to commit suicide or retaliate even to the point of killing their bullies.

Bullies

  • They may develop alcohol and drug problems.
  • They may engage in fights, vandalism and other destructive activities.
  • Some may also drop-out from school.
  • They may engage in sexual activities at an early age and end up getting sexually transmitted diseases.
  • Bullies tend to become abusive toward their partners and children.

Sex Slavery

sex slavery

What is Sex Slavery?

Its purpose is to sexually exploit the victim. Sex slavery comes in the form of single-owner sexual slavery, ritual slavery, forced prostitution and non-sexual purposes that involves non-consensual sexual activities. Back in the days, concubinage was the most prevalent form of sexual slavery and it still goes on in some cultures today – women are forced to live their lives in sexual servitude.

Sexual slavery is a form of enslavement as it limits a person’s autonomy, freedom and power to decide – especially matters that involve sexual activities. There are various types of sex slavery including forced marriages, domestic servitude and forced labor that includes sexual activities. Sex slavery constitutes a continuing offense because it involves practices that treat women as servants and thus, violate laws that prohibit slavery.

Confessions of a Sex Slavery Victim

‘I can never forget my past or the cruelty of those men. I’ll never understand it.’

Sreypov Chan is a young Cambodian woman who suffered from sex slavery when she was a young girl… At 7 years old, when most young girls are invited to slumber parties, she was sold to a brothel in Phnom Penh to work as a sex slave. What made her situation worse is that her own mother made the sale. For many years, pimps would force her to have sex with at least 20 men in a day… if she refused or try to run away, Sreypov was punished – burned with a hot poker, covered with biting insects and every unthinkable punishment there is.

Sreypov luckily escaped the brothels when she turned 10; she was able to start a new life and is now ready to talk about her story. Sadly, she is not the only one who has suffered and is continuously suffering from sex slavery today… There are more than 12 million individuals who are victims of forced prostitution and labor around the world.

‘My whole identity was robbed. Unless you’ve been in that position, you can’t understand.’

Meghan Stephens (not her real name) has suffered a similar fate as Sreypov Chan. When she was 14, she fell in love with a man who turned out to be a pimp… Her boyfriend sold her to different men for 6 years. She is now 25 years old and living a life with her true identity revealed in fear that her past will be discovered. When Meghan was being trafficked, she was forced to have sex with multiple partners in a single day. Her boyfriend made her believe that escort work is the only way to raise enough money for them to be together. Meghan grew up in a troublesome household, her parents divorced when she was 4 and her mother was an alcoholic. That is why her mother permitted Meghan to live with her boyfriend. Meghan depended on her boyfriend for everything – she was innocent, in love and very reliant. Meghan lost her confidence which made it even more impossible for her to leave her boyfriend and the life that she lived with him. Her boyfriend also threatened to kill her mother if Meghan would try to leave or escape… Meghan even recalled one particular night when she had sex with 110 men before being violently sick. The owner of the brothel had to close for the night and back then, she thought that the owner was really nice to do that. It only shows that Meghan was really not in the right frame of mind at the time. She felt helpless and she did not want to put her mom in danger so she continued with what she was doing.

Kathleen Frank. She was abused by her father at the age of 10 years old. At least that is the age she woke up to it; Kathleen’s father abused her while she was sleeping.  But later in her years Kathleen started getting flash backs of times when her father was ‘too close’ and certain touches were uncomfortable for her. Shortly after Kathleen realized she was being abused, she became this target of others who also abused her, such as her great grandfather, cousins and her brother. Kathleen told her mother, but her mother refused to believe her.  Perhaps her mother did believe Kathleen but was in denial, in any case Kathleen did not get the protection she needed and felt she had to find ways to protect herself. This is when Kathleen became assertive in her attitude, angry with her abusers, and eventually developed the mind set that the only way someone will love her is to give them what they want. This attitude caused Kathleen to turn toward young men of at least 8 to 20 years older than her for attention and love them in the wrong way. Kathleen had a warped perspective on what love was, and it wasn’t until she was in her later 30’s when she realized how much she needed help. Kathleen sough help; she sought God, it was her way to get a right perspective on love and to know the unconditional love of Christ. Kathleen started journaling her feelings and revelations of her healing process. After 10 years of writing her thoughts, her fears, her healing, Kathleen published her journals in her recent book, ‘I’m Fat and Nobody Cares’. Kathleen’s book tells the world her story in detail in hopes to help others who have had similar experiences. Kathleen was able to receive complete healing of her abuse through her writings and her book has helped thousands of abused women and girls receive healing too.

Break the Silence for the Victims of Child Abuse

victims of child abuse

‘Don’t put off tomorrow what you can do today.’ – Thomas Jefferson 

Many victims of child abuse keep their suffering a secret because they feel ashamed and afraid… most of them continue to suffer long after they have survived their abusive experience. They have terrifying nightmares that make them wake up shaking and disoriented in the middle of the night. They live in constant fear that their past may become reality again.

Victims of child abuse may continue to live that way if no one will help them ‘break the silence’! Erin Merryn is just one of the many survivors of child sexual abuse; she is responsible for the legislation of Erin’s law – this requires public schools to educate students about sexual abuse prevention. Erin’s goal is to encourage other victims of child abuse to speak up….to break their silence!

The force behind Erin’s law has helped others to come out and speak up about their abusive experiences… here are some of the stories of people who are just like Erin Merryn.

The Story of Ter-rae Lee

Ter-rae Lee is a survivor of child sexual abuse; she had been abused by her own father from ages 11 to 13. An article that she read from Seventeen Magazine encouraged her to speak up about her experience and tell her mother. Through the help of RAINN (Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network), she began her recovery and was able to gain a confession from her father. Today, her father is serving time in prison – which makes Ter-rae feel safe after a long, long time. Ter-rae wants to encourage other victims of child abuse to break their silence and obtain justice for their abusive experience; ‘When you tell your story, you will feel like a weight has been lifted off your shoulders. There’s always light after the dark, and one day you might be able to help someone by talking about what happened.’

The Story of David Moody

David Moody is one of the victims of child abuse; it took him a while before he spoke up about his abusive experience. He struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder and anxiety before he decided to tell his wife about the male babysitter who molested him when he was 9 to 10 years old. After getting the counseling that he needed, David is now comfortable talking about his experience. ‘I was like a pressure cooker that had a valve released. I didn’t know how tight I had been wound up until I said the words out loud’. Today, David wants to help others learn about child sexual abuse and encourage survivors to share their experience. ‘It is an emotional freedom, to finally know that it was not my fault; that I am strong and that I deserve to be happy. It is a clearness like nothing I have ever experienced until now’.

The Story of Kathleen Frank

Kathleen Frank was abused by her father at the age of 10 years old. At least that is the age she woke up to it; Kathleen’s father abused her while she was sleeping.  But later in her years Kathleen started getting flash backs of times when her father was ‘too close’ and certain touches were uncomfortable for her. Shortly after Kathleen was realized she was being abused, she became this target of others who also abused her, such as her great grandfather, cousins and her brother. Kathleen told her mother, but her mother refused to believe her.  Perhaps her mother did believe Kathleen but was in denial, in any case Kathleen did not get the protection she needed and felt she had to find ways to protect herself. This is when Kathleen became assertive in her attitude, angry with her abusers, and eventually developed the mind set that the only way someone will love her is to give them what they want. This attitude caused Kathleen to turn toward young men of at least 8 to 20 years older than her for attention and love in the wrong way. Kathleen had a warped perspective on what love was, and it wasn’t until she was in her later 30’s when she realized how much she needed help. Kathleen sought help, she sought God, it was her way to get a right perspective on love and to know the unconditional love of Christ. Kathleen’s started journaling her feelings and her revelations of the healing process. After 10 years of writing her thoughts, her fears, her healing, Kathleen published her journals in her recent book, ‘I’m Fat and Nobody Cares’. Kathleen’s book tells the world her story in detail in hopes to help others who have had similar experiences. Kathleen was able to receive complete healing of her abuse through her writings and her book has helped thousands of abused women and girls receive healing too.

 

Be the Voice of Victims of Child Abuse

According to surveys, about one in ten children suffer from child sexual abuse before they turn 18. In order to help put a stop to this social problem, you must ‘be the voice’ of victims of child abuse. You can do this by helping promote education, awareness and advance the conversation about this issue. Get in touch with abuse prevention organizations in your area, especially if you know someone who is suffering from child sexual abuse.

By simply speaking up, you can help save the life of a child abuse victim; offer useful information about where people can turn to for help if needed. Help empower people and organizations to prevent child sexual abuse all over the world; help create a safe environment for children where abuse does not exist. If you make it one of your priorities to help, nothing is impossible!

What is Incest?

incest

Incest is defined as having a sexual relationship with people who are too closely related to you – by law, you are not allowed to marry these people; it is the serious crime having sexual acts with a parent, child, sibling or grandchild. About 23 percent of all sexual abuse cases in the world are incest and the most commonly reported involves a father-daughter relationship.

Sexual contact typically does not happen when the daughter is still young; intercourse usually takes place when the child is past 12. According to reports, alcohol is one of the biggest factors behind these sexual abuse cases – about 20 to 50 percent of abusive fathers are alcoholics.

Cases of brother-sister incest are also very common; it usually happens within families that suffer from serious problems. Healthy and happy families exhibit affection with each other. However, it should be remembered that affection is very different from ‘sexual stimulation’.

What is Incest Taboo?

This cultural taboo is prevalent in today’s society and many past societies. Modern societies have already established laws and restrictions against closely consanguineous marriages (related by blood). Some societies even extend the taboo to people who are not related by blood such as milk-siblings, step siblings and adoptive siblings; relationships between third-degree relatives such as half-aunt and first cousin, are also viewed differently in some cultures – most cultures discourage it.

The most common reason behind incest taboo is the impact inbreeding has on the offspring of incestuous relationships. Close genetic relationships usually produce children who have high risk of congenital disorder, disability and even death. Unintended incest sexual relationship may also occur because of sperm donation, surrogacy and adoption – people are uncertain or clueless about their biological relationship to others.

Types of Incest

  • Between an adult and a child. This is considered as child sexual abuse and is the most commonly reported case of incest. However, the prevalence of this type is quite difficult to assess because most victims keep it as a secret. Moreover, reports show that this form of child abuse is more likely to happen between stepfather and daughter as compared to biological father and daughter. Some of the most ‘common features’ that lead to the occurrence of incest include extreme paternal dominance, reassignment of mother responsibilities to the daughter and an estrange relationship between mother and daughter.
  • Between consenting adults. The most common reason for this occurrence is the ‘genetic sexual attraction’ between the two adults. Although not so many cases of this incest have been reported, some evidences point to its occurrence; technological advances such as chat rooms and other websites have fostered the occurrence of incestuous relationships today.
  • Cousin relationships. Marriages and sexual relationships that occur between first cousins are tolerated in some areas of the world. However, it is still considered as incest and is strongly discouraged by many cultures. Although the occurrence is very rare, it is indeed present in some communities – in Pakistan, marriages between cousins are encouraged to ensure the purity of descent line and that patrimony will not pass into ‘outsiders’.
  • Aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews. In some cultures, marriages among aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews are considered legal. However, in the case of the Dutch, they must seek the consent of the Dutch government first because of the risk of inbreeding defects. Consensual intercourse between adults is tolerated in Netherlands and Belgium but is seriously punished in the US such as in Florida and other US States.

Abuse Among Filipino Girls

abused Filipino girls and boys

Many Filipino families view their children as blessings from God; parents shower their children with unconditional love and provide everything that their child needs. Unfortunately, this is not the case in every household. Some Filipino girls and boys are not properly nurtured and attended in their homes; they are not secure and they suffer from abuse in the hands of the people who should be caring for them.

The increasing number of children who work in the streets and beg for alms is very alarming – it is the most ideal reminder that many Filipino girls and boys are neglected. In fact, many children are rushed into maturity because they are forced to work early on in their lives; they are forced to take on the roles and responsibilities of adults and to seek a better life for their families.

The number of children who are abused by their parents, relatives or complete strangers, especially Filipino girls, is also on the rise. Abuse comes in different forms for Filipino children; some suffer from physical and sexual abuse while others are sold for forced labor, trafficking or prostitution. Often, a child may be abused in more than one form – a street vendor may be physically abused and molested at home. Take for instance, the story of Mary…

Mary’s Story

Mary is now a teenager and in the care of a crisis intervention center for physically and sexually abused Filipino girls. She is a bright and courageous girl; it’s quite difficult to imagine that she went through ‘torment’ at such a young age. Mary used to live with her mother and step-father. Her mother was often physically violated by Mary’s step-father and things got worse when he started raping Mary.

Mary told her mother about the rape, but her story fell on deaf ears. She felt lost and afraid, so Mary had no choice but to continue to live with her mother and step-father. The rape continued for a number of years before her mother finally believed her. Mary was permitted by her mother to live with her aunt where she could attend school. However, her mother was unable to beg for enough money without Mary’s help.

Mary’s mother falsely accused her aunt of abusing her in an effort to get Mary back on the streets to beg for alms. A foster mother took pity on the girl and adopted her; Mary was cared for by the foster mother like she was her own. However, the foster mother got really sick which made it difficult to continue to care for Mary.

A street worker found Mary and her half-sister and referred them to the crisis intervention center. For Mary she was able to adapt well to her new structure and education given in Tahanan Santa Luisa, but unfortunately not for her half-sister who eventually ran away to resume the life she was raised in, back in the streets begging for alms.

Child Abuse as Defined by the Filipino Law

Republic Act 7610 defines child abuse as the infliction of physical or psychological injury which include but is not limited to – cruelty, neglect, exploitation and sexual abuse. There are different categories of abuse: physical, emotional and sexual. Physical abuse involves any act that results in non-accidental and/or unreasonable physical impairment of a child. Common examples are severe beating, strangulation and more.

When a child is deprived of his or her basic needs and general care, this may be considered as a case of physical neglect. Emotional abuse, on the other hand, is the infliction of non-physical harassment such as cursing and belittling. Sexual abuse usually happens among Filipino girls but it also occurs with boys; when a child is used to gratify the sexual needs and urges of an adult or any older person, it is sexual abuse. Common cases of this abuse include rape, incest, prostitution and pornography.

Physiological Effects of Child Abuse

physiological effects of child abuse

Victims of abusive attacks develop the feeling of fear, confusion and anger even after their traumatic situation is over. Some of them are unable to form relationships with others and detach themselves from reality; the physiological effects of abusive acts may vary from one person to another depending on the victim’s experience and ability to cope.

Undergoing abusive attacks may cause a person to break down and develop serious mental illness such as depression, paranoia and PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). If these physiological effects are not properly addressed, the victim may fall into greater physical, emotional and mental problems later on.

Mental health professionals may help a victim deal with their emotions; seeking the help of an expert may help you develop your coping skills and rebuild your self-esteem. Abused victims who do not undergo therapy after their traumatic experience may develop the habit of substance-abuse or alcoholism. Seeking professional advice is never too late; even if many years have passed since the abusive act you should still get help.

Effects on the Cortex and Limbic System

Adult survivors who have history of child abuse often easily respond to minor triggers; abused victims can be reactive even to minor stimuli that can cause their frontal lobe function to decrease and their limbic system to increase. Thus, their learning and problem solving development is slowed down while their impulsiveness is increased.

Decreased Hippocampal Volume

Your hippocampus (a small region of the brain that forms part of the limbic system and is primarily associated with memory and spatial navigation) plays an important role in processing information on the brain – without it nothing makes sense. It is very sensitive to stress hormones; when the hormones reach a high level they affect the ability of the hippocampus to function properly. If a person goes through excessive stress, he or she is unable to differentiate useful information from not. A particular stimulus may easily be misinterpreted in the absence of rational evaluation, which results to the inappropriate response of a person.

Thyroid Production is Affected

Your thyroid gland is responsible for producing hormones that can modulate metabolism. When it doesn’t function properly, your body may suffer from a number of health concerns involving your physical, physiological and interpersonal functioning. A deficit in thyroid production may compromise your neurobiological structures and decrease your resilience from trauma; creating additional stress to your ‘state of mind, body and soul’.

Acceptance of Painful Memories in Life

acceptance of painful memories

Many people go through traumatic experiences during their childhood that greatly affect what they become as adults. Take for instance, Kevin – he has many bad memories of his father but what affected him the most is when his father said that he’s good for nothing. He keeps on failing with everything he does including school and work and has developed a habit of substance abuse. He grew up believing that he really is good for nothing. Acceptance of painful memories such as Kevin’s is important for an abused child to move on as an adult.

Traumatized individuals can use these helpful tips to begin their acceptance of painful memories and focus back to reality.

Ground Yourself

For victims of abuse, it’s quite easy to fall back to the familiarity of trauma. It is vital for victims to stay grounded to avoid making the same mistakes again in their lives. Some people find comfort and stability by engaging in activities such as yoga or Pilates. When they meditate, they are able to regain their inner peace and let go of the pain that they experienced.

Build Relationships

Acceptance of painful memories doesn’t come easy to victims of abuse. When they remember their traumatic experience, they embody the feeling that they are not deserving of love and support. Also, when they spend their lives alone for a long period of time the negative feeling only grows deeper. It is important for abused victims to build relationships and find people who will support them. These people may not always know what to say or do to take the pain away, but their support and company are very powerful tools for healing.

Learn to Forgive

Forgiveness always takes time. Victims of abuse find it difficult to completely forgive their perpetrators, especially if the abuser is a family or friend. They feel that they did not deserved what happened to them; that it was unfair! However, they must realize that they are only hurting themselves by holding on to bitterness and anger.

Of course, they didn’t deserve to be abused; it is not their fault. Understanding that their perpetrators are the people to blame may take some time. But once they do, they can finally move on with their lives and put their traumatic experience in the past.

Victims of abuse must also learn to forgive themselves; it’s not easy and it’s an ongoing process, but they need to. The most devastating events in a person’s life are the ones that hold the most essential lessons. The key to living is pushing pass through the hurt – acceptance of painful memories.

Abuse – How Do Victims Deal with It

abuse

Abuse is any form of maltreatment that can leave psychological wounds to the victim. The ‘injuries’ of abuse take more time to heal than any bodily wound. Oftentimes, the survivor of an abusive act is haunted by negative feelings and experience difficulty in coping with reality. Some may even struggle to lead a normal, happy and peaceful life again.

Distressing memories, trust issues and paranoia are just some of the challenges that victims of abuse have to overcome after they have been maltreated. Each victim copes differently; some may take a while to move on from their pain while others quickly overcome their distress with the help of a support group.

 

Psychotherapy for Abuse Survivors

Therapy is one of the most important forms of help that an abuse victim can get in his or her road to recovery. Victims of abuse need a person or group that they can trust to express      and process difficult emotions that are related to their experience. Therapy and support groups can develop self-compassion and self-care strategies to help the victim overcome overwhelming moments and learn to trust again.

There are several types of therapeutic approaches that are used to help victims of abuse. These approaches employ mindfulness techniques like meditation or experiential techniques like painting. Being a part of a support group has proved to be effective in helping abuse victims cope with the trauma. It offers social support that helps transform their feelings of shame, guilt and alienation from others as they meet people who have undergone similar experiences that they’ve had.

 

Psychological Repercussions of Abuse

Abuse can cause a negative impact on the life of an individual. However, some emotional or psychological problems are not necessarily caused by an abusive act. In fact, the severity of a victim’s trauma is dependent on many factors – the relationship of the victim to the abuser, whether the abuse was recognized or dismissed by family and friends and so forth.

Children who are victims of abuse undergo emotional problems that affect their academic and social performance.  Adults who survive from abusive attacks may find it difficult to keep healthy relationships and may lose focus on their work. Victims who are at high risk of developing mental health issues due to what they have been through, may experience depression and other serious psychological problems like anxiety, dissociation, anger and self-destructive behavior.