Child Abuse Introduction
Child abuse is defined as a variety of harmful behaviors directed against children. It can take many forms. Child abuse in general is a psychological problem or perversion of the abuser. The abuser is referred to as the perpetrator of abuse.
Child abuse includes the following conditions:
Child sexual abuse
Emotional neglect and abuse
Failure to thrive
Munchausen by proxy syndrome
The descriptions of child abuse in the next section are intended for people who have questions about abuse, what it is, and how it may present itself. Although some cases of child abuse are obvious, many are not. Early recognition of child abuse tendencies and intervention at the point of recognition is the only way to avoid the liability of criminal prosecution.
These descriptions may help you identify abuse in its various forms. You will also find information about what you can do if you observe child abuse or if you are a parent dealing with problems that are straining your capacity to cope with the parenting experience.
If you think you are acting in an abusive way or are having a difficult time with your children or yourself as a parent, you may have identified a tendency to be abusive. These tendencies can include the following:
Excessive and loud verbal confrontation
Excessive corporal punishment
Sexual feelings or excessive feelings of anger about children
Tendencies can be treated more effectively than the frank abusive behavior that can evolve from a tendency. You will want to seek help early to avoid the tendency evolving into an act of abuse.
If you observe child abuse in others, you are obligated to report the abuse to the police or medical authorities.