Children who live with violence in their homes bring many of their concerns and fears into their childcare centers.
- difficulties with concentration and distractibility
- difficulty trusting in or being comforted by a teacher
- trouble getting along with their peers
- aggressive and misread social cues from others
- extreme passivity
- use of profanity and other violent words
- coercion – (usually with end result being violent)
- lack of communication for fear of repercussions
Risks Posed to Children from Violent Homes:
There are 4 main risks which children face when living within the context of domestic violence.
Men who batter their wives are more likely to assault their children than those men who do not abuse their wives. In fact, children in homes where domestic violence occurs are physically abused or neglected at a rate 1,500% higher than the national average.
Abuse of children by a batterer is more likely when the marriage is dissolving, the couple has separated, and the husband/father is highly committed to continued control of the mother and children.
Older children are frequently assaulted when they attempt to intervene to defend or possibly protect their mothers.
Daughters are more likely than sons to become victims of the battering husband since woman abuse is also the context for sexual abuse of female children. In fact, daughters of abused women are 6 times more likely to be sexually abused as girls from non-abusive families.
Mothers who are battered are more likely to physically abuse their children than are non-battered women. Studies have found that mothers who are the victims of frequent abuse are more likely to victimize their children than non-abused mothers; and that mothers who experience severe violence are more likely to use severe punishments and violence in resolving conflicts with their children.
41% of all abductions occur between the separation of the parents and the divorce. More than half of these abductions occurred in the context of domestic violence. Custodial interference is one of the few battering tactics available to an abuser after separation; thus it is not surprising that it is used extensively.
Observations of Violence Against Mothers
The majority of the children from violent homes observe the violence inflicted by their fathers or male guardian upon their mothers; most research suggests as many as 90% of children from violent homes witness the battering of their mothers.
Children witnessing the violence inflicted on their mothers evidence behavioral or emotional problems similar to those experienced by physically abused children demonstrating behavior that can be destructive not only to themselves but others as well.