The Long Term Effects of Child Abuse
People don’t often think of the long term effects a victim of child abuse suffer from as they enter adulthood. Child abuse is not something you outgrow, something that will just fade away. Especially when some abuse goes on for years and went unknown. So many children live in abuse that is unreported for many reasons. Even with reported cases a victim lives with the mental effects that was caused by the abuse.
Quite often a victim of abuse enter their adult years with mental illness.
Some mental illnesses being more severe than others. Depression, anxiety, suicide, self hate, low self esteem, ptsd, dissociative disorder, and more. Often the mental illnesses lead to more serious effects like anger, rage or drug addiction.
Often society has judged mental illness and drug addiction, not knowing how ones past was. These judgements only case the mental illness to worsen and become a danger. Mental illness and drug addiction is not a choice like society often sees it to be.
I myself a survivor of child abuse suffered many years of mental illness. I lived with agoraphobia, depression and panic disorders. I was suicidal in my past. I was judged where my self blame only grew worse.
We have to keep reaching out to victims of abuse and help them become survivors. Let them know they don’t have to fight their past alone. Show them people do care and are willing to help them.
We cannot let street drug addiction keep killing young people today. We have to put the suicidal rates of young adults and children down. Its time to stand up and be their voices . Reach out and help change a life.
Its just about five years since I left an abusive marriage now. My girls are now young adults. They both are dealing with the mental effects of our past. Sometimes I have to convince myself I am not at any fault .
My oldest daughter is a single mom just getting out of an abusive relationship herself. Her ex still calls and tries to manipulate her and control her life even though he has been in a new relationship. She suffers with severe panic attacks, social anxiety and some depression.
My youngest daughter has suffered with anger issues and has physically caused harm to people. She is now trying to take control of her anger, which is now causing her depression.
The reason why I am writing this is so people can understand domestic violence does make an impact on our children. Some children grow to be passive and others grow to be aggressive.
Its not us victims of abuse to blame.
So many times I hear well you chose to raise children in that environment. They don’t see it’s not really a choice we willingly make. We live in fear of what the abuser will do if we try to walk away. We are often threaten if we leave to take the children or cause harm to them. They control our every move to make sure we are not able to get out.
Please if anyone out there is going through domestic violence find help. Talk to a doctor, child’s school anyone and let them know you need help. Nine times out of ten they will listen and send help your way. One lady I advised on an online support group was write a letter to the school principal, let them know what is going on in the home and your in need of help. Put this letter in the child’s school bag with their homework. Or even call and schedule a conference with the teacher, or abuser will only think it’s school related. When you get to the school let them know your home situation they can help.
Children our silent victims.
I am so proud of my fellow Rome citizens. I grew up in Rome my entire life and I have to say they have really stepped up over the past few years trying to end domestic violence .
Having such community support helps more victims come out and speak out of the abuse they have or are enduring in their relationships. I myself had hid in violence for many years behind my closed doors. I did not speak about it I his in shame. My daughters were forced to live through the mental and emotional effects of my abuse. In 2012 I finally said I could no longer hide because it has caused much depression, self blame and feeling unworthy as a mother to my girls. I began writing as my way of healing and speaking out to other victims . We are no longer victims we are survivors and conquerors. I will continue to help every victims come out and speak out. No one should ever feel ashamed or alone.
I want to give a personal thanks to the Rome NY Police Department, the city of Rome , YWCA and the women fighting to continue the awareness ,for making this event possible.
As long these supporter continue to keep ” Take Back the Night ” awareness for domestic violence going them hundreds of victims in violence will find it easier to become a survivor.
The Donald Henderburg Memorial LAX Foundation and family and friends of Stephanie Morrison sponsored a fundraiser for awareness and raised money for this bench. Sadly Stephanie Morrison life was taken by a domestic violence act in 2013. The seat of the bench is engraved “Domestic Violence ‘Give It A Rest”
The other day I was talking to a friend I knew for quite some time. She always talked of her family including her husband. She talked of what a great person he is, what a sweet daddy he is and so on .
One day she was venting on how she found out how her husband has been cheating on her. She was very hurt and depressed. A mom of five young boys. She didn’t know what to do next. She was very depressed and said she couldn’t move forward.
I was surprised to hear this because every one thought she had the perfect marriage and the perfect husband. She asked me for advise on how to put this pass her.
I really didn’t know how to answer so I did the best I can. I told her I knew how it felt to feel alone and scared . I then added that I was in a different situation than her. I told her about my abused life and marriage.
What she told me next was to my surprise. She said she was abused also. I never expected this because she never seems to be a victim and was constantly talking so highly of her husband.
Like I always say abuse can be happening anywhere to any woman or man. There are not always bruise not always signs to look for.
I hid my abuse for many years and being a survivor of my past I have to say to victims. I know its hard to speak out I been there. Find one person you can trust and let them know. Don’t hide in shame or embarrassment like I did as well as many others. Abuse is not your fault. Its nothing yo feel you have to be shameful about and continue to live in it. You children are being exposed to it. You may feel they are to young to notice or understand, believe me they know. Get out and get help. Since childhood I his sexual and physical abuse. My daughters were raise in it . Now at the age of 45 , I look back at those years and ask myself how did you survive. I am a survivor and you can be to. Speak out your not alone and someone will hear you.