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The Impact of Domestic Violence on Children
Our parents and other adults in our lives effect our childhood development, they help shape our personalities, emotional competence and verbal skills. As kids the things we see our parents and influential figures do, can have a significant impact on us, and that impact is not always a positive thing. Something like domestic violence could cause a great impact on a child’s development. Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behavior in a relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and over another partner. This abusive behavior could be physical, emotional, or even sexual. Many children today are likely to experience or witness violence at home “Every year an estimated 3.3 million to 10 million children are exposed to domestic violence in their home.” (Thornton, 95) In Understanding the emotional impact of domestic violence on young children it states “of 246 children living with mothers who had been physically assaulted by their partners, Abrahams reported 73 per cent of the children as having directly witnessed assaults on their mothers and 52 per cent as having seen the resulting injuries. Overall, 92 per cent of the children were found to have been in the same or next room whilst their mothers were assaulted” (Thornton, 90). Children are negatively impacted by witnessing abuse to their mothers because they are less aware of their own emotions, develop eating disorders, a drug or alcohol abuse problem, are more likely to become criminals/abusers, and have low emotional intelligence.
Over the past half century, violence in the United States has increased dramatically. Children who were raised in a tough, low-income neighborhood often fail to escape exposure to violence. They may witness homicides, assaults, and some may even have had a friend who had been killed. The concerns people have about the effect domestic violence has on the children from these neighborhoods has prompted researchers to conduct an increasing number of investigations into this issue. With domestic violence being the most frequent type of violent crime, a child's home is no longer a safe haven. Statistics show that domestic violence is the major cause of injuries to women; their husbands or lovers kill one third of all women murdered in United States. Unfortunately, a number of these cases occur in the presence of children (Tsavoussis).
Violence has long been accepted as something that happens to women. The gender role in domestic violence is partly related to differences in physical strength and size. Women are socialized into their gender roles in different societies throughout the world. In societies with a patriarchal power structure and with firm gender roles, women are often poorly prepared to protect themselves if their partners become violent. Husbands who batter wives typically feel that they are exercising a right, maintaining good order in the family and punishing their wives'...