Child Abuse Term Paper

Child abuse is one of the most hate able crimes in the human history, because this perpetration not only gives birth to ever lasting suffering and pain to the victim personally but his or her families are also the victim and they have to bear the negative effects of the disaster through out their lives.

The most brutal consequence of abusing a child is that the child himself does not know how to describe what has happened to him and this confusion results in the shape of violence and frustration. Specially when these victims enter the phase of adolescence and realize what had happened to them in the past, they feel insult and humiliation, many of the suicide attempts undertaken by school and college students are found out to be victims of this crime in their childhood. There are different types of child abuse, such as: physical abuse, neglect abuse, and sexual abuse, which is very common these days.

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Legal Definition of Child Abuse

The Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (Public Law 100-294) defines child abuse and neglect as the physical or mental injury, sexual abuse or exploitation, negligent treatment, or maltreatment: of a child (a person under the age of 18, unless the child protection law of the State in which the child resides specifies a younger age for cases not involving sexual abuse) by a person (including any employee of a residential facility or any staff person providing out-of-home care) who is responsible for the child's welfare under circumstances which indicate that the child's health or welfare is harmed or threatened thereby.

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse is when a person causes physical harm to a child by beating, shaking, biting, kicking, burning, or otherwise causing the child physical pain in any other way. Although many times the parent or guardians did not intend to hurt their child, physical abuse can also be caused by physical punishment or over-discipline that is not suitable for the child's age.

Physical abuse is the intentional use of force on any part of a child's body that causes serious injuries. It might be a single incident, or a series of similar incidents.

Physical neglect is also the failure to meet the child's basic physical needs. This includes failing to provide appropriate nutrition, shelter, clothing health care and protection from harm.

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Child’s Behavior

If a child is physically abuse, he or she will be easily frightened; child will be fearful, afraid to go home or can cause harm to self or others.

Neglect Abuse

Child neglect abuse is defined by failure to provide the child's primary needs. Neglect can be or emotional physical, or educational. Educational neglect includes permission for constant absence, failure to enroll a child in school, and inattention to a special educational need. Emotional abuse includes chronic exposure to alcohol and drug abuse, verbal attacks on a child, continuous humiliation or spouse abuse in the child's presence, rejection of child and failure to provide needed psychological care. Exposure to fighting or brutal conflict in the home, forced separation, may also cause emotional harm. Emotional abuse rarely happens only once and it is usually part of particular way of relating to children.Emotional abuse is any lack of care that causes serious harm to a child's development. Emotional neglect is the failure to meet the child's emotional needs for affection and a sense of belonging.

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Child’s Behavior

Constant fatigue or listlessness, developmental abandonment, lags, steals and begs food, overly passive, complaint aggressive or demanding and sleeping disorders.

Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse includes various behaviors: fondling a child's genitals, rape, intercourse, exhibitionism, sodomy and commercial exploitation through the production of pornographic materials or prostitution. Many State laws distinguish between sexual assault and sexual abuse. To be considered sexual abuse, these acts have to be committed by a person who is responsible for the care of the child (e.g. a parent, day care provider, babysitter, or other person responsible for care.) Sexual assault is normally described as sexual acts performed by a person who is not looking after the child.

Sexual abuse can involve various degrees of emotional strain and violence. Sexual abuse may also be committed by relatives such as uncles, aunts, grandmothers, grandfathers, and cousins.

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Sexual abuse is the inappropriate exposure of a child to sexual contact, behavior or activity. It may include sexual touching, exploitation, intercourse, or exposure. Sexual abuse of a child is a criminal offence.

Child’s Behavior

Sexual abuse can result in different behaviors, like: masturbation, regressive behavior, withdrawal from normal human contact, suicidal attempts, self-destructive and fear of selected individuals.

How to Prevent Child Abuse

Today every body in the United States is concerned and worried about the safety and security of their children, every researcher on the psychology of child abusers have given some suggestions to counter the problem and prevent happening further incidents, but unfortunately we do not the tangible results of these efforts taken by the government or social organizations. Any child does not know legal problems; he or she only knows that he/she cannot trust any body in his whole life. This is the mental and Psychological homicide of our new generation so serious efforts should be taken to check this crime. Given are some of the suggestions.

The child abuse is a crime and perpetrators should be treated as criminals and should not be given any mercy unless mental disorder is authentically proved. The first, primary and predominant priority in cases of child abuse is protection of the child because he is the direct victim of the crime and may also be wounded and in some cases these wounds could be fatal and result in the death of the victim.

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All issues of family unit treatment must be resolved in favor of the child's emotional, psychological, and physical safety because if these problems are not resolve yet than they will generate profound effects on the future of the child and he or she may react violently in the form of suicide. A social worker charged with protection of the child and simultaneous rehabilitation of the offender is a professional schizophrenic.

Professionals must begin to distinguish between abusers who simply never learned to be parents and those who exploit a power relationship with their own children for personal sexual gratification and/or profit, just because these people doesn’t keep their responsibilities despite being an indulgent father or mother they abuse and destroy their children for an their own pleasure. Child abuse has profound consequences for its victims. And untreated child abuse has a predicable range of fallout including delinquency, drug abuse, suicide, and mental illness. Identification, treatment, and follow up of cases of child abuse cannot be limited to a single agency. All agencies, from day care centers to schools to social services to probation to mental health, must participate jointly in a consortium model to provide services.


1. Child Abuse and Neglect (1992), Children Today Vol.2/No.2