By: Joemar Pasco
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How Domestic Violence affects Children’s Development?
Domestic violence is the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power acted out against one intimate partner from the other intimate partner. All summed up, Domestic violence is, an unfortunate event that happens too often. Not only is it physically damaging and/or mentally damaging for the person it’s happening to, but it also damages the children in the surrounding area as well.
Short and Long Term Effects of Domestic Violence to Children’s Development
How domestic violence affects children’s development can be explained with words or shown with evidence with the children who have become adults and speak on experiences every day. There are some short term effects, and long term effects, but short term effects are just as harmful as the long term effects. With preschool children, they may start bed-wetting, thumb-sucking, increased crying or whining. School-aged children will be less communicative with their peers, start to have little to no self-esteem, they may even experience headaches, and stomach aches.
Teenagers who are witness to domestic violence may start acting out violently towards others at school, may start having unprotected sex early on, acting out in ways that can permanently ruin their lives forever. These were just some short term effects, long term effects include but are not limited to, a young boy witnessing his mother being abused is more than likely going to turn around and do the same to his partner and the cycle continues.
For a young girl witnessing her mother being attacked by her father, statistically she is six times more likely to be abused in her own domestic relationship, and to another unfortunate statistic, she is more likely to go through sexual abuse than a young girl who isn’t being raised in a home where domestic violence is not present.
Effects of Domestic Violence on Children
How domestic violence affects children’s development, honestly depends on the child. No child is the same so, how domestic violence affects Sally may not be the same way it affects Sue. Some children develop mental illnesses such as anxiety and depression, other children can suffer from obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and other illnesses. With all the many effects, you can guarantee that it can and will take a toll on any child to be raised in a violent environment.
Domestic Violence is an unhealthy experience and any woman going through domestic violence should be advised to leave immediately. It can be easier said than done, especially for someone who has been going through it for so long but think of the children. No one wants to go through abuse and just because a child isn’t front and center (or they might be) while the abuse is happening, they can hear the abuse and its a teardown for them too.