What is emotional child abuse?
Happy children make happy and productive adults. Children need to feel wanted, loved, safe and valued. They need constant attention, care and discipline. This care should be given from birth, through toddlerhood, puberty, and teenage years. In fact even when we all men and women, we still need love and care and support from our families.
Parents and care-givers do not get it right every time. Sometimes they make mistakes, but that is not emotional abuse. We say emotional abuse when there is a severe, deliberate (and sometimes unintentional) and persistent ill treatment towards a child, which adversely affects a child's emotional health and development. Sometimes, it is too easy to tell that a child is emotionally abused, unhappy and uninterested.
But sometimes, emotional abuse is not only actions, but spoken words too. Shouts, insults, yelling and threats can all hurt the feeling of a child and affect them emotionally. Example, yelling out "You're a never-to-do-well-child!" or "You are so stupid and a big failure" or "I have told you several times… are you deaf or just brain dead?" These kinds of words should never be said to anyone.
Did you know:
Domestic violence is also a form of physical abuse, even though the abuse is between two adults. The adults could be parents, married couples, girlfriends and boyfriends and same-sex relationships. It can be very scary if a child (including teens) is caught up in domestic abuse. The child can see and hear all the violent things going on and that can have huge impact on them.
Now, let us see the various forms of emotional abuse.