I found a great site today. It has a very good description of what kinds of abuse there are, and what falls under each catagory. Here are the basics.

Examples of physical child abuse

  • Shaking or shoving
  • Slapping or hitting
  • Beating with a belt, shoe, or other object
  • Burning a child with matches or cigarettes
  • Scalding a child with water that is too hot
  • Pulling a child's hair out
  • Breaking a child's arm, leg, or other bones
  • Not letting a child eat, drink, or use the bathroom

Indicators of an physically abused child include; bruises, cuts, burns (perhaps from cigarettes) or broken bones. There is possibility of abuse if the child has difficulty walking, sitting or performing other daily tasks due to soreness. Weight loss may result if the child isn't getting enough food. An overweight child might be overeating because of feelings of worthlessness. Look for developmental stalls, especially in infants, such as not having age-appropriate language or social skills. Consider personality: Distrust, excessive efforts to please, shyness or introversion (playing alone), fighting (a call for attention) or not getting along with others could all be signs of abuse. Watch sleeping habits: A child who's often tired (due to lack of sleep) or who frequently has nightmares may be a victim. Look for signs of drug or alcohol abuse in the child and his or her parents. Monitor the child's performance at school. Falling grades or underachievement could indicate abuse. Consider any self-destructive behavior, such as suicide attempts or self-mutilation, as an indicator that the child may be a victim of abuse.

Examples of sexual child abuse

  • Fondling a child's genitals
  • Having intercourse with a child
  • Having oral sex with a child
  • Having sex in front of a child
  • Having a child touch an older person's genitals
  • Using a child in pornography
  • Showing X-rated books or movies to a child

Indicators of an sexually abused child include; Changes in behavior. A child may suddenly act shy or fear visits from friends and family. Your child may cry excessively and have extreme mood swings. Depression. If your child is usually a happy child and suddenly is withdrawn from his or her peers, or be experiencing low self-esteem, this may be a sign of sexual abuse. Sleep problems or nightmares. Your child may suddenly develop problems going to sleep and staying asleep. While it is common to have nightmares in some children, if your child is not prone to nightmares, he or she may have been sexually abused. Bed-wetting or other changes in toilet training. If your child suddenly starts having frequent accidents, or suddenly cannot use the toilet after months of toilet training, he or she may have been molested. School or behavioral problems. If your child has stopped doing his or her schoolwork, refuses to go to school, or is acting unusually aggressive at school, this can indicate sexual abuse. A fear of certain people, places or activities, or intense clinging. When your child sees someone who has been molesting him or her, or they see a dark bedroom where the abuse took place, they suddenly get fearful of that person or place. If you take a child to the park and they no longer want to play on their favorite toys, or if your child starts clinging to you as they did as an infant, sexual abuse may have taken place. Unexplained bruises or rashes. If your child has bruises that could not have come from playing, or a rash that cannot be explained, this may be a sign of abuse.

Examples of child neglect

  • Not meeting a child's need for food, clothing, shelter or safety
  • Leaving a child unwatched
  • Leaving a child in an unsafe place
  • Not seeking necessary medical attention for a child
  • Not having a child attend school

Indicators of a neglected child include; When the child is frequently absent from school. Begs or steals food or money. Lacks needed medical or dental care, immunizations, or glasses. Is consistently dirty and has severe body odor. Lacks sufficient clothing for the weather. Abuses alcohol or other drugs. States that there is no one at home to provide care. Kids who are typically neglected, the parents can appear to be indifferent to the child. Seems apathetic or depressed. Behaves irrationally or in a bizarre manner. Is abusing alcohol or other drugs

Examples of child emotional abuse

  • Excessive demands on a child's performance
  • Penalizing a child for positive, normal behavior (smiling, mobility, exploration, vocalization, manipulation of objects)
  • Discouraging caregiver and infant attachment
  • Penalizing a child for demonstrating signs of positive self-esteem
  • Penalizing a child for using interpersonal skills needed for adequate performance in school and peer groups.
  • In addition, frequently exposing children to family violence and unwillingness or inability to provide affection or stimulation for the child in the course of daily care may also result in emotional abuse.

Indicators of an emotionally abused child include inappropriate behavior that is immature or more mature for the child's age, dramatic behavioral changes (disruption of activities, clinging or compulsively seeking affection and attention), aggressiveness, uncooperativeness, bedwetting or loss of bowel control (after a child has been trained), and destructive or antisocial behavior (being constantly withdrawn and sad). Furthermore, poor relationships with peers, lack of self confidence, unusual fears for the child's age (fear of going home, being left alone, specific objects), or inability to react with emotion or develop an emotional bond with others are also indicators. Realistically, any of the above behaviors may also be seen in normal children, but a change in pattern of these behaviors is a strong indicator of emotional abuse.

The above are common signs and signals there is something wrong. If you have seen or heard a child being abused in the above ways, please call for help. Most times children are unable to get help for themselves. Most times it takes someone else to step in to make it stop. These kids need our help. You can check out the site I mentioned here: http://www.apa.org/pi/cyf/abuse.html I hope everyone stays safe out there.


Last Edited By: Stanley Thornton Aug 25 09 12:35 PM. Edited 1 time.