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Violence is a big part of the world today. The news and the television always have some kind of story that is dealing with violence. People are always wondering why violence started and why people would do something like that. When we look at the big picture, most types of violence start at home. As children grow up they are influenced by many things in the world. A lot of times people say that children are the splitting image of their parents. Children tend to act and do things that their parents would do. This means that if a child witnesses someone at home getting abused by a parent, they will most likely think that it is ok and learn from that. A child learning violence at home comes with many kinds of consequences. Many children who learn and observe abusive behaviors will also demonstrate those behaviors. Research has been done in attempt to show, children who witness or are abused during childhood tend to demonstrate these behaviors during later childhood and adulthood.
Aggressive and troubled behaviors in young children may be indicators or problems that are suffered at home form direct child abuse from the parents. It may also come from indirect abuse, such as witnessing domestic violence. Direct violence is a violence that is at home and is targeted against the children by the parents. There are several symptoms that a child will face when they are abused. Some will include an attempt to harm themselves, become depressed, model the behaviors of their parents, and acting out in violent and aggressive ways. Indirect violence is a violence at home in which a child witnesses abuse against the parents. There are also several symptoms to watching this kind of abuse such as the child’s development is negatively impacted, negative emotional reactions, behavioral problems, and physical and mental health impairment
Baldry (2007) conducted a study that was done with 532 Italian young children, measuring direct and indirect child abuse from parents and parent to parent abuse, which were causing troubled and aggressive behaviors. The results showed high levels of delinquent and aggressive behaviors and high levels of reported direct and indirect family abuse. The problems were found mostly to be associated with parental abuse. It indicated that children who are abused are more likely to become aggressive or even involved in deviant acts. The results basically said that if a child is involved in abuse or has witnessed abuse, they will have some kind of affects from it.
Many women are abused by intimate partners and millions of children witness this everyday. About half of the men that abuse their wives also abuse their children. About 3.3 million children are exposed to violence against there mothers.(Baldry, 2007) Many of these children are also physically abused. Children who are exposed to violence often show difficulties in life such as violent behavior as adults. There is evidence out there that witnessing or experiencing violent behavior is related to different types of abusive behavior or even psychopathology. There are a variety of outcomes that come with physical abuse such as behavioral, emotional, and social problems. Some of the affects are short-term, but a lot of them are long-term. These affects will have an impact on the children for the rest of their lives.
Murrell, Christoff, and Henning (2007) looked at the differences in generality, frequency and severity of the violent crimes, nonviolent crime behavior, and psychopathology within a population of 1,099 adult males with different levels of exposure to violence as a child. Generality, frequency, and severity of crime all increased as the levels of childhood violence increased. A theory showed that men who witnessed domestic violence as a child committed the most frequent domestic violent crimes. They also found that men who were abused as a child were more likely to abuse children. The study also found that men who were abused a child were more likely to commit more violent crimes. Studies are proving that children who are abused or witness violence are the ones that commit more violent crimes as adults. The results proved that violence has an affect of people. As the participant’s exposure to violence increased, so did the chances of having more violent behavior as adults. The results also showed that adults that were abused as a child will often times become a child abuser.
Children who are exposed to parental violence are at risk for adjustment problems, but little is known why children from violent families develop different patterns of adjustment. In Fosco, DeBoard, and Grych (2007) research it showed that children’s perceptions and interpretations of aggression may play a role in the impact of parent violence on their short-term and long-term functioning. Parent conflicts have been linked to children’s emotional and behavioral responses to conflict as well as their adjustments in life. Parents affects on children is what shapes the child and causes them to be who they are. This explains why there are violent children in the world, who learning things from their parents.
The results showed that violence does have an effect on children. Many children not only deal with behavioral problems, but also with social and emotional problems. Most children think that most of the time it is their fault for the violence, so they try to figure out why it is happening and what they can do to stop it. This can cause a huge amount of stress, which takes a lot out of a child. In many cases violence can cause a child to have many symptoms such as anxiety, depression, or even posttraumatic stress disorders.
Children are often times traumatized from abuse and the effects of it. It is especially difficult for a young child to deal with abuse. That is why a lot of time children have several issues dealing with it. There are several treatment modalities out there that are developed for children who are exposed to abuse and family violence. One type of treatment is one-on-one, which deals with the individual’s traumatic problems, thoughts, and behavioral interactions. Another type of treatment is group treatment, which deals with general beliefs, attitudes, and reactions to violence. Some treatments just focus on adjustment problems, such as aggression or conduct disorders that have to do with child abuse. Other treatments deal with preventive strategies, which are to help children that are living in violent families. The overall goals for exposure interventions are to help a child; 1. Separate the thoughts, cues, and any other reminders of surrounding trauma; 2. Make sense of reactions of the traumatic event; 3. Discuss and think of an alternative response. (Vickerman, Margolin, 2007) There are several problems and results that children face when dealing with abuse. Any way that someone can help a child get through these problems will help them have a better life. All the interventions and resources out there are to help the child, so that they are not dealing with the issues for the rest of their lives.
There are many studies and research found to prove that any child who witnesses or has been abused will have many affects from it as and adolescent or an adult. Children do learn and develop at a very young age and that is why it can be very harmful to a child to witness or go through abuse. A child will have many affects from violence and some of them can harm them for the rest of their lives. Many children will grow up with emotional, social and behavioral problems due to the violence that have faced. It is proven that a child that is involved in family violence will have greater chance of becoming a more violent adult. This might be the reason why we have so much violence in the world. There are interventions and treatments out there for children and adults to go for help. In most cases the treatments do help and children are able to move with their lives. The biggest thing when it come to people who have experienced violence is that most of them deal with huge problems and if they can get help, in most cases it will not affect them forever. Abuse and violence at home needs to stop and in any way that it can be prevented or helped will help fix this problem in the world.
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