Abuse in
Families
Reportable Child Abuse and Neglect

1. Physical abuse.
Physical assaults (such as striking, kicking, biting, throwing, burning, or poisoning) that causes, or could cause serious
physical injury to the child.
2. Sexual abuse. Vaginal, anal, or oral intercourse; vaginal or anal penetrations; and other forms of inappropriate touching or exhibitionism for
sexual gratification.
3. Sexual exploitation. Use of a child in prostitution, pornography, or other forms of inappropriate touching or exhibitionism for sexual
gratification.
4. Physical deprivation. Failure to provide basic necessities (such as food, clothing, hygiene, and shelter) that causes, or over time would cause,
serious physical injury, sickness, or disability.
5. Medical neglect. Failure to provide the medical, dental, or psychiatric care needed to prevent or treat physical or psychological injuries or
illness.
6. Physical Endangerment. Reckless behavior toward a child (such as leaving a young child alone or placing a child in a hazardous
environment) that causes or could have caused serious physical injury.
7. Abandonment. Leaving a child alone or in the care of another under circumstances that suggest an intentional abdication of parental
responsibility.
8. Emotional abuse. Physical or emotional assaults (such as torture and close confinement) that cause or could cause serious psychological
injury.
9. Emotional neglect. (or developmental deprivation) Failure to provide the emotional nurturing and physical and cognitive stimulation needed
to prevent serious developmental deficits.
10. Failure to treat a child's psychological problems. Indifference to a child's severe emotional or behavioral problems or parental
rejections of appropriate offers of help.
11. Improper ethical guidance. Grossly inappropriate parental conduct or lifestyles that poses a specific threat to a child's ethical
development or behavior.
12. Educational neglect. Chronic failure to send a child to school.
(from: "Understanding Children and Adolescents" by J.A. Schickedanz, D.I. Schickedanz, P.D. Forsyth, G.A. Forsyth, 2001)
Effects of Spousal Abuse on Children:

Emotional  
~~feeling guilty for the abuse and for not stopping it;
~~grieving for family and personal losses;
~~confusion or conflicting feelings towards parents;
~~fear of abandonment, of expressing emotions, of the unknown, and/or personal injury;
~~anger about violence and chaos in their lives;
~~depression, feelings of helplessness;
~~embarrassment by the effects of abuse and dynamics at home.
Behavioral  
~~acting out or withdrawing;
~~overachiever or underachiever;
~~refusing to go to school;
CYCLE OF VIOLENCE
Phase  1: Tension-Build-Up
The abuser starts showing unpredictable behavior, perhaps using threats, courting conflict, making
her feel bad about herself, and generally showing more anger and violent behavior.  This may last a
few hours or many months.
Phase 2: Explosion
The fight happens.  The abuser  may hit, kick, slap, choke, throw things at his partner or otherwise
attack her.  He may abuse her sexually or use weapons. These incidents usually happen without
witnesses, and the victim generally cannot stop the attack. Afterward, she may feel pain, fear
despair or humiliation.  
Phase 3: Denial
The abuser minimizes and makes excuses for what he did.  He may say things like, "If only you
hadn't...."  He will often blame her for the abuse, and may even accuse her of "starting it." Often,
the victim blames herself for the abuse: "If only I'd...."  
Phase 4: Honeymoon
After the explosion and denial, a period of remorse, often called the "Honeymoon" phase, may
develop. The abuser may say he's sorry, and may even shower his victim with gifts, flowers, and
other "tokens."  He may promise it will never happen again, say he will change, and even offer to
seek treatment.  She feels hopeful and loved, wanting to believe in the man he "used to be."
Phase 5: Starting Over
Phase 5 is really a return to Phase 1. Often, however, the abuse is more severe, and in most cases,
the "Honeymoon" and "Denial" phases disappear. It's important to remember that everyone's
experience is unique, and is not limited to the information provided.
SPOUSAL ABUSE**
Physical Abuse is:  
restraining you in any way; stopping you from leaving; holding or hugging you when it is unwanted; pointing a finger at you or poking you; choking,
kicking, punching, slapping you; any unwanted physical contact; abusing children.  Physical abuse is not limited to the behaviors listed here.  
Sexual Abuse is:  threatening to harm your reputation; putting you down; getting back at you by refusing to have sex; treating you as a sex object; forcing you to look at
pornography; lack of intimacy; sleeping around; being rough; forcing certain positions; hounding you for sex; forcing you to have sex (rape); abusing children. Sexual abuse is
not limited to the behaviors listed here.
Social Abuse is:  putting you down or ignoring you in public; not letting you see your friends; not being nice to your friends; making a scene; change of personality with
others; not taking responsibility for children; embarrassing you in front of children; using children as a weapon; choosing friends or family over you. Social abuse is not limited
to the behaviors listed here.
Emotional/Verbal/Psychological Abuse is:  intimidating you, making you fearful; playing "mind games"; not telling you what he is doing; ignoring you, silence;
verbally threatening; name calling; yelling, raising his voice; being sarcastic or critical; degrading you or your family; laughing in your face; brainwashing; inappropriately
expressing jealousy; lying; falsely accusing; walking away from you in discussion; refusing to do things with you or for you (e.g. sex); consistently getting his own way; accusing
you of sleeping around; treating you as a child; finding and verbalizing your faults; commenting negatively about your physical appearance; comparing you unfavorably with
other women; having a double standard for you; telling women-hating jokes; threatening to hurt your children, your family, your friends, or your pets.  Emotional, verbal and/or
psychological abuse is not limited to the behaviors listed here.
Financial Abuse is:  withholding, diverting, embezzling, or controlling funds. Financial abuse is not limited to the behaviors listed here.
Spiritual Abuse is:  degrading one's beliefs; withholding means to practice; forcing adherence to a belief system. Spiritual abuse is not limited to the behaviors listed
here.

**The use of feminine pronouns for the victim and male pronouns for the abuser is not intended to imply exclusivity. The pronouns are used only for ease in
conveying the message; implies most common abuse situations, however.
Are you being abused? Answer yes or no to the following statements:

My partner pushes and shoves me.
My partner grabs/slaps me and pulls my hair.  
My partner calls me names.   
My partner makes me have sex when I don't want to.  
My partner touches me in an inappropriate manner (unwanted touching, fondling, caressing).   
My partner uses (unwanted) verbal and non-verbal sexual expressions at me (inappropriate body language, gestures, suggestions, requests, and
threats).
My partner controls all the money.
My partner yells at me in an abusive manner.  
My partner humiliates me in public or private by calling me names, put-downs, embarrassing me.  
My partner prevents me from visiting my family and friends.
My partner threatens to take the children away if I leave.
My partner continually criticizes me.
My partner prevents me from going to work.
My partner threatens physical violence.
My partner uses violent behavior (punches holes in the wall, breaks dishes or household furnishings).  
My partner throws objects at me.
My partner isolates me from the community and social gatherings.  
My partner uses weapons or objects to apply force on me.
My partner keeps me from leaving the house.   
My partner locks me out of the house.
My partner destroys things that belong to me.

If you answered YES to even one of the above questions, you are being abused.
How to recognize the beginnings of abuse (DANGER DANGER DANGER if your date/boyfriend/girlfriend shows any of these behaviours):

Calls to check up on you several times a day, is overly possessive and extremely jealous.

Follows you around or stalks you.

Loses interest in his/her own activities to become more and more involved with you.

Attempts to isolate you from friends, both male and female.

Discourages you from outside interests and activities you enjoy.

Needs total control - he/she makes the decisions.

Your future is decided by him/her, although you don't agree.

Your partner can't settle differences with words.

Uses alcohol or drugs as an excuse for violent behavior.

Emotionally abuses you (insults, belittling comments, ignoring you, acting sulky or angry when you initiate an action or idea).

Tells you who you may be friends with, how you should dress, or tries to control other elements of your life or relationship.

Talks negatively about women in general (male).

Gets jealous when there is no reason.

Drinks heavily, uses drugs, or tries to get you drunk.

Berates you for not wanting to get drunk, get high, have sex, or go with him/her to an isolated or personal place.

Refuses to let you share any of the expenses of a date and gets angry when you offer to pay.

Is physically violent to you or others, even if it's "just" grabbing and pushing to get his/her way.

Acts in an intimidating way toward you by invading your "personal space" (sits too close, speaks as if he/she knows you much better than he/she does,
touches you when you tell him/her not to).

Is unable to handle sexual and emotional frustrations without becoming angry.

Does not view you as an equal -- because he's/she's older or sees himself/herself as smarter or socially superior.

Thinks poorly of himself/herself. Guards his masculinity by acting tough (male).

Goes through extreme highs and lows, is kind one minute and cruel the next.

Is angry and threatening to the extent that you have changed your life so as not to anger him/her.

Pushes for quick involvement.

Cruel to animals, children, his/her mother ...

Playful use of "force" during sex.
~~care taking, more concerned for others than self; parent substitute;
~~aggressive or passive;
~~rigid defenses (aloof, sarcastic, defensive, "black and white" thinking);
~~excessive attention seeking (often using extreme behavioral measures/tactics;
~~bed-wetting and nightmares ~~out of control behavior, not able to set own limits or follow directions;
~~aggression towards the mother or woman caregiver.
Psychological  
~~somatic complaints (headaches, stomachaches, and other "unexplained" illnesses);
~~nervous, anxious and short attention span (may be misdiagnosed as having Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder);
~~tired, lethargic;
~~frequently ill;
~~poor personal hygiene;
~~regression development (bed-wetting, thumb sucking; depending on age);
~~desensitization to pain;
~~high risk play and activities;
~~self abuse;
~~unable to accept support and assistance from adults.
Social  
~~isolation from friends and relatives;
~~relationships are frequently stormy, start intensely and end abruptly;
~~difficulty in trusting, especially adults;
~~poor anger management and problem-solving skills;
~~excessive social involvement (to avoid home life);
~~may be passive with peers or bully peers;
~~engage in exploitive relationships, either as perpetrator or victim;
~~play with peers gets exceedingly rough.
Cognitive  
~~blaming others for their own behavior;
~~believing it is acceptable to hit people they care for in order to get - what they want, to express anger, to feel power, or to get others to - meet their needs;
~~possessing a low self-concept originating from a sense of family powerlessness;
~~not asking for what they need, let alone what they want;
~~distrustful;
~~believing that anger is bad because people get hurt;
~~rigid stereotypes: to be a boy means...to be a girl means...to be a man, woman, husband, wife, partner means...
Go to this link for a booklet
called "Our Right To Be
Protected From Violence:
Activities for Learning and
Taking Action For Children
and Young People" by the
Secretariat of the United
Nations Secretary-General’s
Study on Violence Against
Children, International Save
the Children Alliance, UNICEF,
and the World Organization of
the Scout Movement by
UNICEF.
http://www.unicef.
org/violencestudy/pdf/Our%
20Right%20to%20be%
20Protected%20from%
20Violence.pdf
“...violence occurs when someone uses their strength or their position of power to hurt
someone else on purpose, not by accident. Violence includes threats of violence, and acts
which could possibly cause harm, as well as those that actually do. The harm involved can
be to a person’s mind and their general health and well-being, as well as to their body.
Violence also includes harm people do to themselves, including killing themselves.”
Go HERE for the indicators of child abuse in
children and parents.
Scroll down on that same page for techniques to
use for a crying baby (anti-Shaken Baby Syndrome
techniques) from the
National Center on Shaken
Baby Syndrome.
Follow this link to go to an emergency
safety plan. ok?