Child Abuse Prevention

QUESTION: Is child abuse prevention possible?

ANSWER:

Is child abuse prevention possible? Yes. But, first of all, I think the definition of child abuse should be known so we can recognize the signs of a child being abused. Child abuse has many definitions, but consists of any act of commission or omission that endangers or impairs a child's physical or emotional health and development. Some forms of child abuse include:

  • Physical abuse: kicking, slapping, burning, pinching, hair pulling, biting, choking, throwing, shoving, and whipping.

  • Sexual abuse: any sexual act between a child and an adult including fondling, penetration, intercourse, exploitation, pornography, exhibitionism, child prostitution, group sex, oral sex, or forced observation of sexual acts.

  • Neglect: failure to provide for the child's physical needs including lack of supervision, inappropriate housing or shelter, inadequate provision of food, inappropriate clothing for season or weather, abandonment, denial of medical care, and inadequate hygiene.

  • Emotional abuse: any attitude or behavior which interferes with a child's mental health or social development including yelling, screaming, name-calling, shaming, negative comparisons to others, telling them they are "bad, no good, worthless" or "a mistake." It also includes the failure to provide affection and support necessary for a child's emotional, social, physical, and intellectual well-being. This includes ignoring, lack of appropriate, physical affections (hugs), not saying, "I love you," withdrawal of attention, lack of praise, and lack of positive reinforcement.
  • According to Childhelp USA, each day more than three children die as a result of abuse or neglect in the home. On average, a child abuse report is made every 10 seconds - a total of approximately three million child abuse reports annually.

    The following tips can help child abuse prevention for your own children as well as those you care for. Here are some of the guidelines to follow:
    • Never discipline your child when your anger is out of control.
    • Participate in your child's activities and get to know your child's friends.
    • Never leave your child unattended, especially in the car.
    • Teach your child the difference between "Good touches," "bad touches," and "confusing touches."
    • Be alert for any talk that reveals premature sexual understanding.
    • Pay attention when someone shows greater than normal interest in your child.
    • Be aware of changes in your child's behavior or attitude, and inquire into it.
    • When your child tells you he or she doesn't want to be with someone, this could be a red flag. Listen to them and believe what they say.
    • Teach your child the correct names of his/her private body parts.
    • Teach your child what to do if you and your child become separated while away from home.
    • Make certain your child's school or day care center will release him/her only to you or someone you officially designate.
    Do not be afraid to call into the hotline designated for child abuse reports. Many people believe that everyone should play a role in child abuse prevention, but the majority who witness such an occurrence will do nothing about it. Many are afraid of what it will mean for them after the report has been made especially if names have to be given. This is not the case; you can call in anonymously. Call the National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453) is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    Learn More About Finding Help for Child Abuse!

    WHAT DO YOU THINK? - We have all sinned and deserve God's judgment. God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, "Jesus is Lord," you will be saved from judgment and spend eternity with God in heaven.

    What is your response?

    Yes, today I am deciding to follow Jesus

    Yes, I am already a follower of Jesus

    I still have questions