Sad stressed little african american girl crying, upset lonely bullied child feels abandoned abused, preschool black orphan kid in tears sit alone on floor, children abuse, domestic violence, unhappy childhood concept

How to Help Protect Your Child from Exposure to Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence Awareness

No one- absolutely no one– deserves to be the victim of domestic violence. This is especially true when it comes to children. 

Domestic violence is not merely one person hitting another. It is the intentional actions of one person to maintain power and control over another. Also, it is not always physical, although emotional abuse often leads to physical abuse. It is not always the actions of a man on a woman. It is not subject to any particular race or social status. 

The signs of potential abuse are not always obvious at the onset of a relationship. Still, there are some red flags to pay attention to. Make sure you do not make excuses for these behaviors. Denial of a person’s controlling and abusive ways is often a precursor to further, more serious abuse. Some of these early signs include:

  • Your partner tries to control you with insults, intimidating looks, or other forms
  • You have no control over your finances or your partner refuses you access to money altogether
  • Your partner is overly jealous of your relationships with friends and family and prevents you from spending time with them
  • It is common for your partnert to insult or demean you
  • Your partner convinces you that his or her anger and angry outbursts are your fault

If your partner displays any of these behaviors, take note. Pay attention to how your partner makes you feel. Any loving, intimate relationship can have its struggles, but it should never include regular feelings of negativity, disappointment, dislike, or pain. 

Domestic Abuse and Children

Some people in these situations tell themselves, “It’s ok. He’s only hurting me, not the kids. I can handle it.”

The truth is, witnessing domestic abuse significantly impacts children. Children exposed to violence in the home suffer from behavioral, emotional, social, cognitive, and long-term developmental problems. 

Simply keeping the violence in a separate room does not keep the children away from the exposure. Research has shown that 80 to 90% of children living in the home where abuse occurs can provide detailed accounts of the abuse. 

It’s not always easy to see how domestic violence affects children. Here are some common signs to watch out for:

  • Bedwetting
  • Aggressive behavior in the home or school
  • Depression 
  • Suicide attempts
  • Poor behavior/performance in school and/or inattentiveness
  • Isolation
  • Physical symptoms like headaches and stomach-aches

Where to Turn

If you are in immediate danger, call 911. Free, confidential, 24/7 support is also available with the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233. It is never too late to get help, and it is never too soon to leave when violence is involved. 

On average, it takes a survivor of domestic violence seven times to leave the relationship permanently. So if you have left multiple times and feel you may never be able to stay away, don’t lose hope. Likewise, if you are watching with love from afar as someone you love struggles to leave an abusive relationship, hold onto your hope. 

It is always better to raise your children as a single parent than to raise them in a home filled with domestic violence.  The best way to protect your child from exposure to domestic violence is to remove yourself and them from the violence- permanently. 

If you have survived domestic violence and are now looking for a strong divorce attorney, look no further than Paul Bowen. You may think you are not able to leave, but trust us when we say, you can. Reach out to the Law Office of Paul Bowen today.