Applying Psychological Science, Benefiting Society

This is What Child Abuse Feels Like

Mother yelling at daughter

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month and APA is proud to raise awareness about what all of us can do to prevent child abuse and neglect.

The first of our efforts this month is to shed light on the damaging effects abuse can have on children, long into their adulthood.

In the newest issue of In the Public Interest, Angela, a child abuse survivor, recounts the emotional, verbal, and physical abuse directed at her by her mother.

“When she would get angry with me, she would yell and call me names, purposely being hurtful.”

“She continued by telling me that I was the devil and I had nothing but evil in me.”

 “She flew into a rage and told me that I was a bitch and that I would never have any friends.”

 

These are words one shouldn’t hear from anyone, let alone the person responsible for loving them unconditionally.

Angela was the target of her mother’s abuse from age 5 to her late teens, severely damaging her self-esteem and eventually leading to troubles with drugs and alcohol.

Check out the full article to learn what steps Angela took to recover from her mother’s abuse and ensure that the cycle of abuse did not continue while she raised her own children.

The article also includes eight tips for parents to prevent child maltreatment by Julia da Silva, Director of APA’s Violence Prevention Office and the ACT Parents Raising Safe Kids program.

Parents managing their anger is key to the process as demonstrated in our new RETHINK e-card.

Child Abuse Prevention ECard

Help us spread the word by sharing it with your friends and family.

There’s more to come. Check back on the blog throughout April for posts from psychologists working on preventing and treating child abuse.

We want to hear from you! Tell us in the comments – what are some steps we can take to prevent child abuse and neglect? How can we support survivors of abuse?

Other resources you may be interested in:

 

Protecting Our Children from Abuse and Neglect

Understanding and Preventing Child Abuse and Neglect

Child Sexual Abuse: What Parents Should Know

APA Resolution on Psychological Issues Related to Child Abuse and Neglect

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Categorised in: Children and Youth, Violence

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Contact

American Psychological Association
Public Interest Directorate
750 First Street, NE
Washington, DC 20002-4242
Phone: (202) 336-6056
Email: publicinterest@apa.org
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