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Effects of Domestic Violence on Children

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  1. Effects of Domestic Violence on Children

  2. Comparative analysis • Domestic violence has negative effects on children regardless of their sex. • According to Anda (2006), also noted that childhood trauma can have diffuse effects on neurobiological development.

  3. Study Participants • A total of 316 families with a young infant and at high risk for maltreatment were recruited for participation. • 245 of the families were followed past the age of 4 years old. • annual assessments included a comprehensive • assessment at age 12, which is the focus of the analyses presented here.

  4. Modes of Assessment and measures • Reports from child protective agencies • Demographic information • Youth behavioral problems • Examination of other academic outcomes

  5. Locations • Exposure to violence is especially ubiquitous in poor urban areas, where as many as 90% of children and adolescents witness violence. • While the rates of witnessing violence at home tend to be lower compared with witnessing violence in the school and community, between 17% and 25% of youth are exposed to violence at home

  6. Continuation • The exposure of children to violence is likely to have initial problems to the community before anywhere else. • witnessing community violence attenuated the impact of witnessing domestic violence on anxiety, aggression, and delinquency. • The stronger independent effects of violence exposure in more proximal contexts of home and school replicated previous cross-sectional findings

  7. What is Domestic Violence? • A pattern of coercive control that one person exercises over another. • Domestic Violence is not limited to physical abuse, but also includes verbal abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, and economic abuse. • Infants, toddlers, and young children are exposed to violence when they are abused or maltreated. • Violence can also be exposed to children when hear or see others experiencing it.

  8. Continuation Domestic violence: Child protection Child contact

  9. Continuation Child protection: (public law) welfare approach; state intervention in abusive families; mother seen as failing to protect Domestic violence: considered a crime (civil and criminal law); range of support violent male partner Child contact: (private law); negotiated or mediated outcome; good enough father New initiative: Safeguarding Boards From April 2006

  10. What is the Connection Between Domestic Violence and Child Abuse? • Significant overlap- 40-60% of families who present with partner violence also present with child abuse • 32% of caseloads for protective service workers involve DV • 50% of children who are physically abused were in the middle of an inter-parental attack • When there is DV, look for child abuse

  11. Facts • Estimates show that 3-5 children in every classroom have witnessed a woman being abused • In Chicago, studies have shown that among 500 elementary school students one in four had witnessed a shooting and one-third had seen a stabbing • 3 in 5 of those children who witnessed a shooting or stabbing, indicated that the incident resulted in death. • More than 25% of these children had been victims of severe violence themselves-that is, they had been shot at, suffered a knife attack, or had been beaten or mugged.

  12. Continuation • Intentional injury to young children (0-4) is most likely to occur as a result of child abuse (and neglect) • Nationally in 2002, there were over 900,000 estimated maltreated children, with more than 1,300 child fatalities • 80% of these children were under the age of five • Children witness 68-80% of domestic assaults • According to the NYU Child Study Center, 3 million children are diagnosed as having PTSD

  13. Continuation 38,985 (97% Women) sought shelter, 16,570 were turned away (IDHS, 1997). In 2001, state funding supported 67 domestic violence programs, serving 113,700 clients. This includes 25,700 children. Chicago Police Department receives 655 domestic calls per day (Mayors Office on Domestic Violence).

  14. How are children exposed? Directly witness assault, rape Hear the violence, name calling, threats, intimidation, disrespect Feel the tension See aftermath—broken furniture, bruises on their mother, father (or mother) being taken away by police Forced to participate in or watch the abuse of their mother Intervene to protect their mother

  15. Impact of exposure to DV on children • Over 100 studies available • A third separated abused from exposed children and found similar outcomes • Generally show: • Behavioral and emotional problems • Cognitive functioning problems • Longer-term problems Edleson (1999a)

  16. Boys will be boys and girls will be girls Boys are at risk of: • Learning that males are violent • Learning to disrespect women • Using violence in his own relationships • Confusion or insecurity about being a man • Attacking parents or siblings Girls are at risk of • Learning that male violence is normal • Learning that women don't get respect • Accepting violence in her own relationships • Embarrassed about being female • Becoming pregnant www.yoursocialworker.com

  17. Types of Violence • Child Abuse • Physical • Sexual • Emotional • Neglect • Domestic Violence

  18. Effects of Violence • Child Abuse affects children from all: • Ethnicities • Socioeconomic levels • Religious affiliations • Cultures

  19. Factors which contribute to child abuse and neglect • Lack of parenting skills • Parental stress • Family Hardship • Alcohol and substance abuse • Economic difficulties or poverty • Domestic Violence • Previous Victimization • Depression

  20. Child abuse in the context of domestic violence • domestic violence is the most common context for child abuse; • male domestic violence perpetrators are more likely to be abusive to children and more extremely so; • the more severe the domestic violence, the more severe the abuse of children in the same context; and • children may experience multiple forms of abuse.

  21. Physical Abuse • Characterized by the infliction of physical injury as a result of: • Punching • Beating • Kicking • Biting • Shaking • Burning • Or otherwise harminga child

  22. Indicators of Physical Abuse • Unexplained injuries • Repeated injuries such as bruises, welts or burns • Unexplained abrasions or lacerations • Injuries in various stages of healing • Small circular burns • Burns with a “doughnut” shape • Delays in obtaining medical care

  23. Child Neglect • When a caregiver fails to provide a child with adequate: • Food • Clothing • Shelter • Supervision • Needed medical treatment

  24. Indicators of Child Neglect • Appears poorly nourished or inadequately clothed • Appears consistently tired or listless • Inconsistent attendance at school • Poor hygiene • Unable to relate well to others

  25. Emotional Abuse • Acts that damage immediately or ultimately the behavioral, cognitive, affective or physical functioning of a child, such as: • Criticizing • Name calling • Ridiculing • Blaming • Screaming • Withholding love and affection • Unpredictable responses • Double-message communication

  26. Indicators of Emotional Abuse • Clingy and forms indiscriminate attachments • “Acts out” and considered a behavior problem • Withdrawn, depressed, apathetic • Exhibits exaggerated fearfulness • Bedwetting or soiling

  27. Myths about Children Who Witness Domestic Violence • Children are too young to understand • They won’t remember what happened • You can’t help kids anyway, especially young kids • We should just move on • Kids should just forget about it

  28. Facts about Children Who Witness Domestic Violence • All children are affected by witnessing violence • The younger the child, the more likely they will show signs of distress • Children have more trouble under-standing and coping with violence

  29. Factors Affecting Children’s Reactions to Violence • Intensity • Proximity • Familiarity • Developmental Level • Chronicity

  30. Warning Signs of Witnessing Violence • Numbing • Increased Separation Anxiety • Distractibility • Changes in Play • Withdrawal • Regression • Behavioral Changes • Sleep Disturbances • Somatic Complaints • Increased Aggressive Behavior • Angry Outbursts • Increased Activity Level • Hypervigilance

  31. Effects on Infants and Toddlers • Eating Disturbances • Developmental Regression • Language Delay • Attachment Disorder • Attachment Difficulties • Failure To Thrive

  32. Effects on School-Aged Children • Psychosomatic Complaints • Enuresis • School Problems/Absenteeism • Behavioral Problems • Parentification • Violence • Depression • Attachment Difficulties • Changes in Play • May Talk About Death/Dying

  33. Witnessing Violence Makes it Hard for Children to Feel Safe • Children need to feel safe to: • Grow • Be Healthy • Succeed • When children see or hear violence, they worry they will not be safe

  34. Impacts • wide range of effects – physical, psychological, behavioural, social • influenced by factors such as age, race, economic status, gender, disability, sexuality and children’s resilience • children (even within the same family) may be affected in quite different ways

  35. Impact for future functioning • Lack of trust – adults can’t protect them • Feeling of powerlessness – can’t impact environment • Turning to aggression • Risk for violence in later life

  36. Why the children fail to report • Fear of the violent man finding out • Fear of not being believed • Fear of being stigmatised • Difficulty in talking to adults • Not having anyone to tell • Services not being available

  37. Interventions • empowering (rather than punitive) work with the mother • validate and acknowledge children’s difficult experiences, and reassure them that they are not alone and not to blame • long-term ‘therapeutic’ or other 'talking/ playing' interventions to help children make sense of their experiences • support which takes account of children’s particular circumstances (cultural/ ethnic, age, disability needs etc)

  38. Continuation • Lack of understanding of the dynamics of domestic violence • Lack of co-ordinated practice between agencies • Lack of safe practice • Referral Circuit • Blaming mothers while ignoring violent men • Avoiding violent men, and violent men as fathers

  39. Continuation • Thinking constantly about the traumatic event. • Having nightmares. • Avoiding places, people, or activities that re-mind them of the event. • Losing interest in doing things that they liked before. • Feeling alone, empty, sad, anxious, or uncaring. • Becoming irritable, angry, and easily startled.

  40. Conclusion • Research has failed to address the fact that even indirect exposure of children to violence has profound effect • Most of the research on the effects of witnessed violence have focused on the psychological or behavioral aspects at the expense of other domains • Any examination of academic outcomes must also take into account some key demographic factors.

  41. Recommendations • The parents should ensure that children are not exposed to any form of domestic violence. • The child protection laws should be strengthened to protect children from violent homes • People should avoid making general assumptions concerning the domestic violence issues and address them based on individual experience

  42. References • Michael Windle, Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 51:8 (2010), pp 953–961 • Richard ,Thomson ,Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma, 19:721–733, 2010

  43. Rubric • Total Assignment = 100 pts (=23% of course grade) • 10 pts -- Your research question/ appropriate selection of articles and presentation length--total presentation should be no shorter than 20 and no longer than 40 slides • 45 pts -- Summary of each study; please include for each study the following.

  44. a. Purpose of Study--what are the study's research questions? (6 pts) • b. Design --First, answer this question: is this study experimental?, quasi-experimental?, or correlational? Experimental=are there randomly assigned groups that were treated differently?, Quasi-Experimental--are there groups that naturally occurred--e.g., smokers vs. non-smokers--that were treated differently by the researcher?, Correlational--a group is described and the results show differences among the group members? Second, IF the study has a developmental focus, analyze the developmental design: cross-sectional, longitudinal, or sequential. (6 pts)

  45. c. Methods--include participants, materials/instruments, data collection techniques, and data analysis techniques. After summarizing the methods, analyze what the researchers did in terms of the criteria of 1) objectivity, 2) reliability, 3) validity, 4) representative sampling, and 5) replication. (21 pts)

  46. d. Findings--look for information indicating significant differences--connect the findings back to the research hypotheses. The findings should be contained in the Results section of the paper (6 pts) • e. Conclusions--summary of authors' interpretations from Discussion section (6 pts)

  47. 15 pts--Theoretical Perspective--what are the researchers' (probably implicit) perspectives on human development?--defend your decisions for each study with reasons (from the purpose, design, data collection and analysis, results, and interpretation); you should 1) identify (2 pts), 2) explain (5 pts), and 3) defend (8 pts) whether the perspective of each study is organismic, cognitive-developmental, cognitive-learning, behavioral, psychodynamic, contextual, or humanistic. If possible to determine the specific theory being tested by the study, further analyze the origins of the developmental approach being used. Be sure to defend your point of view.

  48. 15 pts -- Take Home Message--having read these two studies (notice this is a comparative analysis), what do you now believe? (=conclusions, 5 pts) What other questions do you have? (=future research questions, 5 pts) What can you not know for sure? (=limitations, 5 pts) • 15 pts -- Communicative Effectiveness • a. Presence of a brief introduction and conclusion (2 pts) • b. Does paper flow? (please use headings) (3 pts) • c. Are words misspelled or used incorrectly, are subject-verb agreements correct? (4 pts)

  49. d. Correct use of in-text citation (e.g., refer to studies by the authors' last names and year of publication)--please note that the only proper way to refer to a study in formal writing is by the last names of the authors and the year of publication. No article titles should appear in the narrative. (3 pts) • e. Style of references (3 pts)

  50. For both d. and e. please follow the APA Manual of Style, 6th ed. An APA tutorial is available under the Cunningham Memorial Library's home page (see online tutorials). • Please post your presentation as an attachment (with document in Power Point or Word or rtf, preferably) under the Research Presentations Forum of the Discussion Board by the due date listed in the Calendar (under Tools)