One of the worst things that can happen to a child is experiencing verbal, physical and emotional abuse from his own parents. According to Christine Hammond, LMHC, “Emotional abuse is just as damaging as other types of abuse, if not more so because it leaves no visible scars. Instead, the wounds are deep and can take a functioning person and turn them into traumatized.” It can be disheartening to see a child, in his tender years, to be subjected to any form of aggressiveness or brutality. Obviously, the practice of child abuse by parents is widespread in society.
However, only a few people can dare to stand up against abusive parents and to help the kid in need. Do not be like these individuals. If you see a child who is abused by his mother or father, make sure of these things:
- Talk to the Parent Involved
Once you discover that a parent is an abuser, the best thing to do is to approach him about it. Try to point out his mistakes but do it nicely. First of all, avoid embarrassing the parent in public. Learn how to send your message without being rude. Remind the said individual that hurting a young child is a criminal act, which may be punished by law. If he stops the abuse, then it is a good thing. On the other hand, if the wrongful act does not cease, then the best option is to get in touch with the authorities.
- Call the Police
A conversation with the abusive parent may end badly for you. Because of this, it is highly recommended that you save the office address and contact number of the nearest police station or department in your area. This is something that you need to do in order to ensure that your life or property will not be placed in danger. At the same time, calling the police or other authorized governmental authorities is also an excellent way to protect the child from any potential harm or violence from the parents. According to Fran Walfish, PsyD, “Don’t be trigger happy and call authorities without ‘reasonable suspicion.’”
- Comfort the Child
A person who has suffered the different forms of abuse may become aloof and may develop an introvert personality. Because of this, it will be challenging on your part to approach the abused individual. The first thing that you have to do is to get his trust. Make an effort to him that you are not going to do anything that will hurt him. Avoid asking questions that will only make the situation worse. Nonetheless, if the child wants to talk about the abuse, give him a guarantee that you would be listening.
- Get A Counselor
When a child is constantly abused, then there is a high chance that his mental faculties may be affected. The experience may be too traumatic for him, which can lead to severe mental health problems. According to John M. Grohol, PsyD, “Abused children often suffer from emotional and behavioral problems, which can later develop into sexual dysfunction, anxiety, promiscuity, vulnerability to repeated victimization, depression, and substance abuse.” To prevent this unfortunate event from happening, what you need to do is to help the child go through counseling. If you start to become more confused about how to do this, another option available is to bring the child to the guidance counselor’s office of the school where he usually attends.
Just follow the tips mentioned above to start changing a child’s life into something better.