Domestic violence is not a comfortable condition for anybody even slightly involved in the situation, and children are not immune from this impact. Many of these effects occur relatively quickly after the domestic violence has occurred, while others are seen years down the line.
Since children tend to imitate what they see, oftentimes they will learn that violence is acceptable and part of a normal relationship and will become abusive in their own relationships with others. These relationships can include those that occur while he or she is still young as well as when they are an adult.
Some of the behavioral disturbances that can occur in children who witness this violence include aggression towards or withdrawal from others, low self-esteem and an increased level of anxiety.
Later in life, somebody who has witnessed these conditions during childhood is more likely to be involved in domestic abuse. This can include acting as an abuser or as the one being abused. These children have learned that confusion, fear and instability are normal instead of comfort, love and nurturing and are more apt to pass those beliefs on to their own families.
If the parents are not able to take care of their sons and daughters, children will sometimes need to take over the care of their younger siblings. This will cause them to essentially leap from childhood to adulthood once they need to start taking control of things like cooking and cleaning or acting as a mother or father figure.
When a child is not adequately taken care of due to the lack of a competent primary caretaker, they may develop a lack of trust in others and experience eating and sleeping disorders. These children may also be more prone to illness and struggle in school.
Children are often abused themselves. In fact, more than half of those individuals who abuse their spouses also abuse their children. Many children blame themselves for the emotional or physical violence that is taking place at home. No matter who is abused, a criminal defense lawyer is often needed.
Those who are victims of domestic abuse should immediately call 911 to receive protection and assistance in getting out of the abusive situation and to a safe place. These individuals could live with a close relative or friend or go to one of the 1,500 domestic violence shelters that are located in Houston, Texas and all over the United States.
It is important to document all abuse that has happened to provide this information to the police as well as the court if a criminal lawyer is required. The police report or incident number should also be taken down. Any medical attention that is necessary should be sought as well, and any physical injuries should be photographed and documented.
It is helpful to discuss what has happened with a trusted person such as a close friend, co-worker, neighbor or relative. These conversations should take place in a relaxed, safe location.
A protective order can be procured. This will restrict how much contact the abusive person can have with the individuals who were abused. Restrictions can include no contact at all. This protective order should be with the person who was abused at all times. If the abuser breaks the terms of the protective order, they can be arrested. If that individual is on probation, a violation of a protective order usually results in a probation violation.
It is important for the abused person to not consider returning to the relationship unless serious steps have been taken as it is very likely that the abuse will simply continue. The abuser taking responsibility for what happened and going into treatment are steps in the right direction.