2010年11月3日星期三

How Child Abuse Affects A Child Future

IntroductionResearchers agree that child abuse causes physical, social, and psychological effects on victims lives. However, they differ in terms of the extremities of those effects. Some people assert that extreme effects are highly likely given the fact that other issues come into play to affect those manifestations. On the other hand, others argue that there is empirical research to link long term delinquent and criminal cases with child sexual abuse. Consequently, there is a need to examine the validity of these two sides and draw a conclusion on the most feasible. (Finkelhor, 1999)Arguments against extreme effectsThere are a group of specialists who assert that the depiction of extreme cases such as suicide, violence against others, prostitution and other criminal activities may not be valid. These specialists assert that while extreme cases occur, they are the least important in child abuse cases because there are other factors that come into play. These factors reduce the effect that a case of abuse had on a child. This also means that most of the effects that need to take precedence include loosing trust for all adults, depicting signs of cowardice, indicating sadness, having problems concentrating in class, being manipulative, having low self esteem, performing poorly in school, wearing a tough exterior (not crying) or depicting developmental lags in growth.Proponents of this argument argue that the effects of abuse on a child are largely influenced by a range of issues. The first argument that such groups propose is that the severity of abuse will affect how a child turns out. Therefore, it is not always obvious that any child who has been abused will become a danger to society. Some children may not be hurt as badly as others. Consequently, those children with less severe physical abuse will not manifest extreme long term effects. (English, 1998)Others also believe that the frequency of abuse infringed upon a child will affect the depiction of extreme effects. Some children may be subjected to frequent physical, sexual or emotional abuse while other children may be subjected to one case of abuse their entire lives. It is likely that the reactions in both scenarios largely depend on other factors, but research has shown that children who have been subjected to numerous cases of abuse tend to depict extreme effects in later life; some of them may become prostitutes or burglars. Therefore, it is unfair to generalize all the cases of abuse by claiming that they can cause extreme effects.Additionally, these proponents assert that a child's age can affect how they turn out in the future. Research has shown that when a child is abused at a very tender age, then chances are that the impact will be much greater than if they were abused in their teens. Consequently, children who have been abused in their teenage years are less likely to depict extreme behavior such as suicide than those who were abused in later stages of life. (McNamara, 1995)The relationship of the person who committed the abuse also affects a child's future. This means that not all cases can cause large impacts. For instance, when the abuser is a stranger, then the impact that they can cause to such a child would be less severe than if the abuser was a close relative. Children who were abused by close relatives tend to feel more betrayed and they also depict higher levels of distress than those who were defiled or abused by older candidates. Consequently, generalizing all cases of abuse under one umbrella would be unreasonable given the fact that other issues may come into pay. (Heilbrunn, 1986)Another argument brought forward by these group of people is that society these days has various pathways for offering support personnel. Consequently, when an abused child has been taken through a counseling program, then chances are that that particular child will have greater incentives to deal with the abuse and they are also less likely to depict extreme physical or psychological effects.Lastly, proponents of this argument believe that different children have different mechanisms of coping with the nature of abuse. Some children will manifest their abuse in a physical manner such as through comedies or class acts. While such a depiction may not necessarily be a solution to the problem, it gives such children a cushion to their psychological needs and such children may not depict further signs of abuse. Additionally, some children tend to keep to themselves instead of acting out. This means that it would be highly unlikely for such children to show any sign of negative abuse. The main reason behind such behavior is the fact that these children would be afraid of disapproval from yet another party. Therefore, the effects of such a case of abuse would be directed inwards and not outwards as the former proponents assert. (Mccroskey and Meezan, 1998)Arguments for extreme effectsSome researchers in this area assert that child physical abuse is excessively detrimental to the child and will most likely be manifested in their present lives or their future lives as high-risk behaviors. For instance, Nelson, Grant Worley and Higginson (1995) conducted research on adolescents who had been physically abused, they found that these individuals were likely to depict excessive behavior or to highlight extreme effects of the abuse. One such example was the fact that most of the child abuse adolescents tended to carry more weapons, smoke marijuana, abuse drugs, have more than three sexual partners at any one time. The existence of such research evidence shows that child abuse does cause extreme cases.Further research also indicates the fact that most juvenile delinquents and most criminals chose that lifestyle because of child abuse. Newson and Newman (1990) conducted research on the predictors of crime and delinquency. He found that most of the cases of delinquency had one particular thing in common; the fact that they were abused during their childhood. He therefore drew an inference between the cause and effect and was justified to link these two factors together.Other psychologists who have conducted research in this area found that adults who had been victims of sexual abuse during their childhood were four times more likely to have depression than those who had not. These researchers add that depression can be excessively dangerous to a particular individual because depressed individuals are prone to suicide than other psychological cases. Additionally, it is very likely for one to engage in marijuana smoking or other forms of drug abuse if they are depressed. The issue of depression is very dangerous and can therefore cause severe effects in a child's adult life. (Foreman, 1992)Research has also shown that when a child has been a victim of child abuse, then they are likely to manifest feelings of anxiety. This means that such individuals will have problems interacting with authoritative figures in the future or coping with intimate relationships. The latter mentioned issue could cause sexual dysfunction because most of these victims associate any form of intimacy with pain. In the year 2002, a researcher called Meisleman found that of all the patients with serious sexual dysfunction, eighty seven percent of them had been victims of child abuse. (Waldfogel, 2002) Another extreme depiction of child abuse is physical malfunctions. For instance, victims of child abuse are likely to manifest no bladder control or have asthma. The medical malfunctions indicate that there were some issues that had not been addressed after the abuse.The last form of extreme depiction is that of anger. Adults who were abused in their childhood end up nursing a lot of anger within themselves. The victims may choose to depict this anger internally by hating themselves and getting depressed or additionally, it may be manifested outside in the form of further abuse against others. Therefore, such a person chooses to cause harm. (Zupin, 1992)ConclusionWhile it may be true that the nature of one's effects largely depend on other factors, one cannot ignore the fact that proponents of extreme depictions have sighted validated their argument with research. Since numbers never lie, then proponents of extreme depiction of abuse are the most convincing.Reference:English, Diana, The Extent and Consequences of Child Maltreatment, Journal of The Future of Children, 8, 1, 35–53, 1998Finkelhor, D., Current Information on the Scope and Nature of Child Sexual Abuse, Journal of the Future of Children 4 (2):31–53, 1999Nelson, D., Grant-Worley, J. & Higginson, G. November, Physical abuse among high school students, Arch Pediatric Adolescent Medicine, 149, 1254-1259, 1995Newson, E. & Newman, J., The extent of physical punishment in the U.K., London: University of Westminster Publishers, 1990McNamara, Peter, Recounting Abuse At Hands of Children, Los Angeles Times., V. 104, Sec. V, , col. 1, p. 26, 23 May 1995Foreman, Judy, Sad Facts About Family Violence, Boston Globe, First Edition, Living Section, p. 53, January 1992Zupin, Fran, Growing Up Scared: Child Abuse Leaves Deep Scars, Columbia, SC, 24, Sec. Metro/Region, 3B, September 1992Heilbrunn, Debbie, Interaction in Abusive & Neglectful Families, Dissertation Abstracts International, 47, 11-B, 4673, 1986Mccroskey, Jacquelin and Meezan, William, Family-Centered Services, Journal of The Future of Children 8 (1):54–71, 1998Waldfogel, Jane, Rethinking the Paradigm for Child Protection, Journal of The Future of Children 8, 1, 104–119, 2002

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