A mother’s role in child abuse and neglect details what a mother should do if firstly, a child has been abused or neglected. Secondly, what to do if your child is abused? Thirdly, how to protect and prevent your child from abuse and neglect. Fourthly, how to seek support for children in your area.
What Is Child Abuse And Neglect?
Child abuse and neglect include any act that harms a child. Some people use the term “child maltreatment” to include both abuse and neglect. And of course, for any mother, child abuse is the highest form of cruelty. Hence, you don’t really want to face the fury of a mother whose child is being, or has been, subjected to maltreatment.
Children who are maltreated may suffer in many ways. So, young children are at special risk. They may not grow properly, or they may have learning problems. Also, children may feel bad about themselves and not trust other people. Likewise, be scared or angry. Sometimes they die.
Children are not able to understand that abuse or neglect is not their fault. They may think that they did something wrong and deserve what happened. Therefore, it is up to you to care for and protect them. As such, if you know about or suspect child abuse or neglect, there are ways you can help.
What Are The Types Of Abuse And Neglect?
Child abuse means doing something that hurts a child. This may be physical, emotional, or sexual.
Physical abuse is often the easiest type to notice. It includes hitting, kicking, shaking, pinching, and burning. It may leave bruises, cuts, or other marks and cause pain, broken bones, or internal injuries.
Emotional abuse is saying or doing things that make a child feel unloved, unwanted, unsafe, or worthless. It can range from yelling and threatening to ignore the child and not giving love and support. It may not leave scars you can see, but the damage to a child’s mental health is just as real.
Sexual abuse is any sexual contact between an adult and a child or between an older child and a younger child. Additionally, showing pornography to a child is a type of sexual abuse.
Neglect, a form of child abuse, happens when a child does not get the shelter, schooling, clothing, medical care, or protection he or she needs. Hence, child neglect is just as serious as abuse and is even more common.
What To Do If Your Child Has Been Abused Or Neglected
A mother’s role in child abuse includes what to do if her child has been abused or neglected. You can call or go to a police station, hospital, or church child protective services. You do not have to give your name. For instance, a hospital or a church may be able to connect you to places in your area that can help. There are many church programs that deal with child abuse and neglect.
Similarly, if your child is in immediate danger or has been badly hurt, don’t wait. Call the police. If you are a child or teen who is being abused, do not keep the secret. Tell someone who can make a difference, for instance, a trusted family member, teacher, counselor, or doctor. This is because you do not deserve to be abused.
What To Do If You Think Someone Might Hurt Your Child
What to do if you think someone might hurt your child is another mother’s role in child abuse. Therefore, if you think your child is in immediate danger, call or go to the nearest police station. And get your child to a safe place and stay there. This may be the home of a close friend or family member, a church or mosque as the case may be. Then get in touch with a doctor, a child abuse organization, or the police to find help in your area.
If you are worried about the way someone acts around your child, find a quiet time to talk with the person alone. Help the person learn about child development issues. If it is your partner, you could take a parenting class together. You can also plan what you will do next if your concerns become more serious. Then follow through with your plan.
How Can You Prevent Child Abuse And Neglect?
How to prevent your child from abuse and neglect is an important mother’s role in child abuse. So you may find the following actions very useful:
- Listen to your child. Let him or her know it is safe to talk about anything with you.
- Get to know your child’s friends and their families.
- Screen all caregivers, such as babysitters and daycare centers. Find out what they know about child health, child development, and child care. This may include getting permission for a police background check.
- Teach your child the proper names for the private parts of his or her body. Explain the difference between “good touch” and “bad touch.”
- Ask a family member or friend to give you a break when you feel overwhelmed. Learn healthy ways to manage stress.
- If you were ever abused, get help so you do not pass the cycle of abuse on to your children.
How You Can Help Children In Your Area
On a final note, a mother’s role in child abuse examines how you can help children in your area by using the following tips:
- Learn to recognize the signs of abuse and neglect. For example, a child may not grow as expected, may be dirty or unhealthy, or may seem fearful, anxious, or depressed.
- Know the names of your neighbors and their children. Offer to help a new parent. Child abuse becomes less likely if parents and caregivers feel supported.
- Be an advocate for children’s safety. Support groups that help parents at risk of abusing their children. Donate time, money, or goods to a local domestic violence shelter.
- If you see abuse or neglect happening, speak up. Be a child’s voice because you may be saving a life.
Photo Credit: Creative Commons