We never stop and think just how much the children see or even how much emotional pain they feel during the domestic violence around them. They are victims the silent victims. Attached to the end of this post I am also going to add my own childs thought and her pain.
The children also suffer from domestic violence Statistics show that 50 percent of men who abuse their spouses also abuse their children. Even if kids aren’t on the receiving end of abuse, “. . . the emotional effects of witnessing domestic violence are very similar to the psychological trauma of being a victim of child abuse,” says the Women’s Rural Advocacy Program “Boys who see their father abuse their mother may be more likely to become abusive adults. Girls who see their father abuse their mother may be more likely to tolerate abuse as adults
Childhood trauma results from anything that disrupts a child’s sense of safety and security, including:
An unstable or unsafe environment Separation from a parent Serious illness Intrusive medical procedures Sexual, physical, or verbal abuse Domestic violence Neglect Bullying
How Children React to Emotional and Psychological Trauma
Regression. Many children may try to return to an earlier stage when they felt safer and more cared for. Younger children may wet the bed or want a bottle; older children may fear being alone. It’s important to be patient and comforting if your child responds this way. Thinking the event is their fault. Children younger than seven or eight tend to think that if something goes wrong, it must be their fault—no matter how irrational this may sound to an adult. Be sure your child understands that he did not cause the event. Sleep disorders. Some children have difficulty falling to sleep; others wake frequently or have troubling dreams. If you can, give your child a stuffed animal, soft blanket, or flashlight to take to bed. Try spending extra time together in the evening, doing quiet activities or reading. Be patient. It may take a while before your child can sleep through the night again. Feeling helpless. Being active in a campaign to prevent an event like this one from happening again, writing thank you letters to people who have helped, and caring for others can bring a sense of hope and control to everyone in the family. A home that is characterized by physical, emotional, sexual or property abuse is a frightening, debilitating and unhealthy place. The children in such a home are often unable to be children. They worry about protecting their parents. They are concerned that they not become an additional source of stress or problem, and fear for their own safety and security. They have the burden of carrying around a tremendous family secret. Children from violent homes often feel responsible for everything bad that happens to them or to their parents. If they were neater, quieter, helped more or were smarter in school, maybe the violence would stop.
© 2003 National Center for Children Exposed to Violence (NCCEV) Modification: April 13, 2006 1Edelson, J. (1999). Children’s witnessing of adult domestic violence. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 14, 839-870.
As I stated in the beginning, I will add views and thought from my 13 year old daughter. These are her own word she was brave enough to type for me so ignore any spelling errors. I am very Proud of her to this for me.
Growing up with my step dad has been crazy. When my mom first met him he was a severe alchohalic. He was usually drunk all the time. When he was drunk , he would always lexture me and my sister and it was always about something that didnt even make any sense and he would be crying to us , at the time we were little and we didnt really understand what was going on. It would personally confuse me emotionally and mentally. As i got older he became sick. He quit drinking beacuse we were told that could make him sicker. I watched him go through sergery, chemo, takeing all types of medicines, and much more. As he grew old he became more and more sick, well thats what he had us believing. He would tell my mom that he was ready to die and tell her how he wanted his funeral. But then we found out that was all a lie after he did some cruel mean things to my mom. The docter said that he has been cured and that all the surgerys and medicines had worked but thats not what my step dad made it seem like. He was always in bed and he really wanted us to believe that he was dying. But what he doesnt realize is what that did to me , my mom , and my sister. It hurt us really bad . No daughter wants to loose their step dad ,and no wife wants to loose a husband. Now that he moved out , I think a weight has been lifted of my families shoulders. I feel me and my sister are alot happier now because we could do things a normal teenager does without being worried that we were going to wake up or stress out our dying step dad. When it comes to my mom , she has her moments but she has found her way of healing. Me and my sister give her the support she needs to stay strong. With me well i have issues and I am be confused about it all but i know i will get through it all.
I thank god that i did not see the actual physical part of my step father abuse my mother because i would problably be afraid to tell anyone and if anything were to ever happen to my mom , i would feel really guilty that i never spoke up. Here is my message to any kid that has ever witnessed their father or any man abuse their mother, please dont be afraid to speak up. Tell an aunt or uncle ,a school councler , or anyone that you can trust. That man can be charged or arrested for abusing your mother. Nobody wants to witness someone getting abused , so now is your chance to stop it. trust me it would make you feel so much better. We may not be a perfect family but we have been through alot. People should give us a little credit for being as strong as we are today.