You have the power to help your child.

In an abusive relationship, children are often witnesses to the violence, or in many cases, victims themselves.

Children are our most vulnerable, but you are their best ally.

Despite what they may have gone through, children are resilient. Although the impact is profound, because their brains are still developing there are many ways to support and care for a child who has been impacted by abuse. However, there are still a few long-term behavioral, emotional and physical effects that children will need to learn to cope with.

“We must be accountable, proactive and effective in protecting our most vulnerable."

- Jan Edgar Langbein, CEO

5 million children witness domestic violence each year in the U.S.

1 in 15 children are exposed to intimate partner violence each year.

Breakdown of Impact on Children

Abuse affects each child differently, but each child has the capacity to overcome its situation. By identifying how it has affected each child, it becomes easier for all of us to help make a difference.

Behaviorally

Children who have been exposed to abuse are likely to exhibit changes in behavior such as acting out, attention seeking, aggressive or passive behavior, and difficulty setting limits. Often times, children will take on care-taking responsibilities or work to overachieve in their goals in order to get others to see their value. Children are often aloof and sarcastic and can lose interest in school or other activities.

Cognitively

Children tend to feel responsible for violence toward themselves or their mothers, and end up having difficulty trusting others in the future. These children are likely to make excuses for their behavior, and believe it is bad to feel angry. They can develop low self esteem, and have trouble asking others for things they need.

Emotionally

Abuse can have the most effect on a child’s emotional state. This can include feelings of guilt, shame, fear, confusion, anger, and grief. Overall, children tend to feel burdened by their situation.

Physically

Children in abusive situations are likely to exhibit a few physical tells such as somatic complaints of headaches, stomach aches and asthma, they can appear nervous or anxious with a short attention span, and they are likely to be sick with a cold or flu often. These children can often become lethargic and neglect personal hygiene as well as show regression in developmental tasks such as bed-wetting and thumb-sucking.

Socially

When someone goes through an abusive situation, it is normal for it to affect them socially. For children, this often means isolating themselves. These children are likely to have difficulty trusting others, poor conflict resolution skills, and either be passive with others or seek power to be aggressive. These children may become excessively social in order to avoid going home

Behaviorally

Children who have been exposed to abuse are likely to exhibit changes in behavior such as acting out, attention seeking, aggressive or passive behavior, and difficulty setting limits. Often times, children will take on care-taking responsibilities or work to overachieve in their goals in order to get others to see their value. Children are often aloof and sarcastic and can lose interest in school or other activities.

Children tend to feel responsible for violence toward themselves or their mothers, and end up having difficulty trusting others in the future. These children are likely to make excuses for their behavior, and believe it is bad to feel angry. They can develop low self esteem, and have trouble asking others for things they need.

Cognitively

Emotionally

Abuse can have the most effect on a child’s emotional state. This can include feelings of guilt, shame, fear, confusion, anger, and grief. Overall, children tend to feel burdened by their situation.

Children in abusive situations are likely to exhibit a few physical tells such as somatic complaints of headaches, stomach aches and asthma, they can appear nervous or anxious with a short attention span, and they are likely to be sick with a cold or flu often. These children can often become lethargic and neglect personal hygiene as well as show regression in developmental tasks such as bed-wetting and thumb-sucking.

Physically

Socially

When someone goes through an abusive situation, it is normal for it to affect them socially. For children, this often means isolating themselves. These children are likely to have difficulty trusting others, poor conflict resolution skills, and either be passive with others or seek power to be aggressive. These children may become excessively social in order to avoid going home

Behaviorally

Children who have been exposed to abuse are likely to exhibit changes in behavior such as acting out, attention seeking, aggressive or passive behavior, and difficulty setting limits. Often times, children will take on care-taking responsibilities or work to overachieve in their goals in order to get others to see their value. Children are often aloof and sarcastic and can lose interest in school or other activities.

Cognitively

Children tend to feel responsible for violence toward themselves or their mothers, and end up having difficulty trusting others in the future. These children are likely to make excuses for their behavior, and believe it is bad to feel angry. They can develop low self esteem, and have trouble asking others for things they need.

Emotionally

Abuse can have the most effect on a child’s emotional state. This can include feelings of guilt, shame, fear, confusion, anger, and grief. Overall, children tend to feel burdened by their situation.

Physically

Children in abusive situations are likely to exhibit a few physical tells such as somatic complaints of headaches, stomach aches and asthma, they can appear nervous or anxious with a short attention span, and they are likely to be sick with a cold or flu often. These children can often become lethargic and neglect personal hygiene as well as show regression in developmental tasks such as bed-wetting and thumb-sucking.

Socially

When someone goes through an abusive situation, it is normal for it to affect them socially. For children, this often means isolating themselves. These children are likely to have difficulty trusting others, poor conflict resolution skills, and either be passive with others or seek power to be aggressive. These children may become excessively social in order to avoid going home

If your child or the child of someone you care about is in danger, call 911 or our 24/7 Hotline:

214-946-4357