Signs of Abuse

Signs of Child Abuse

Child abuse is an act of abuse that results in physical or emotional harm to a child and in some cases death. The four main forms of Child Abuse are physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse and neglect.

Child abuse is an act resulting in serious physical or emotional harm, exploitation or death. Child abuse includes physical, emotional, sexual and neglect.

 Most of the time child abuse is dependent on a teacher or close adult noticing these signs in order for a child to receive the help they need. 


Child sexual abuse

Sexual abusing a child can be any inappropriate touching, the showing of pornography, sexual acts or exposing of body parts to the child for the sexual pleasure of the adult. In many child sexual abuse cases, there are no pertruding signs of abuse, however the child may have no friends, have low self-esteem, a sudden drop in grades, and may show an unusual sexual interest for their age. 

Physical signs of child sexual abuse include:

  • Sexually transmitted disease
  • Trauma to the mouth
  • Stained or bloody underwear or bruises, bleeding or discharge in the genital area
  • Swelling, itching or pain in the genital area
  • Difficulty walking, sitting or urinating
  • Chronic sore throat, stomach upset, headaches

Domestically abused children

Sometimes children can become the victims of domestic violence or they are emotionally traumatized by someone else being abused in the home. 

Physical signs of domestically abused children:

  • Frequent injuries, often described as an accident
  • Absences from school
  • Child never invites friends home
  • Excessive fear
  • Depression or low self-esteem

Physical child abuse

Physical child abuse is an injury suffered by the child by being harmed by another person. Sometimes this is visible, and sometimes it is not.  is any injury suffered by a child at the hands of another person. Sometimes you can see the injury; often you cannot.

Physical signs of physical abuse include:

  • Injuries on the child’s body in the shape of an object, such as a strap or belt buckle
  • Bruises or burns on the child’s body
  • Fractures
  • A delay between the time of injury and medical treatment
  • Child may be afraid to return home
  • Child may flinch at other adults

What is emotional abuse?

Emotional child abuse lowers a child’s social, emotional, and psychological development and lowers their self-esteem. Most often, physically or sexually abused children also suffer from emotional child abuse. 

Physical signs of emotional abuse include:

  • Low self-esteem
  • Severe depression
  • Aggression
  • Withdrawal
  • Severe anxiety

Signs of Domestic Abuse

If you think you are being physically abused, odds are, you are. 20% of people experience domestic abuse during their lifetime. 


Physical Domestic Abuse

  • Scratching, biting, grabbing or spitting.
  • Shoving and pushing.
  • Slapping and punching.
  • Throwing objects to hurt or intimidate you.
  • Destroying possessions or treasured objects.
  • Hurting or threatening to hurt your children and/or pets.
  • Disrupting your sleeping patterns to make you feel exhausted.
  • Burning.
  • Strangling.
  • Attacking or threatening to attack with a weapon.
  • Any threats or actual attempts to kill you.

Emotional Domestic Abuse

  • Name-calling, mocking, intimidation and making humiliating remarks or gestures.
  • Yelling in your face or standing is a menacing way.
  • Manipulating your children.
  • Telling you what to do or where you can and cannot go.
  • Placing little value on what you say.
  • Interrupting, changing topics, not listening or responding, and twisting your words.
  • Putting you down in front of other people.
  • Saying negative things about your friends and family.
  • Preventing or making it difficult for you to see friends or relatives
  • Cheating or being overly jealous.
  • Shifting responsibility for abusive behavior by blaming others or saying you caused it.
  • Monitoring your phone calls, texts, car and computer use.

Economic Domestic Abuse

  • Forbidding the victim to work or attend school.
  • Sabotaging employment opportunities by giving the victim a black eye or other visible injury prior to an important meeting.
  • Jeopardizing employment by stalking or harassing the victim at the workplace.
  • Denying access to a vehicle or damaging the vehicle so that the victim cannot get to work.
  • Sabotaging educational opportunities by destroying class assignments.
  • Withholding money or giving an allowance.
  • Denying access to bank accounts.
  • Hiding family assets.
  • Running up debt in the victim’s name.

Stalking and Harassment

  • Making unwanted visits or sending you unwanted messages (voicemails, text messages, emails, etc.).
  • Following you, including installing GPS tracking software on your car or cell phone without your knowledge or consent.
  • Checking up on you constantly.
  • Embarrassing you in public.
  • Refusing to leave when asked.

Sexual Abuse:

  • Sexual abuse does occur in committed relationships and marriages.

Signs of Sexual Abuse

If you think you were sexually assaulted, you are not alone. Every 73 seconds, an American is sexually abused. There are many resources to help you and to assist you in finding help and closure. 


Sexual assault:

  • Unwanted touching.
  • Rape: actual or attempted unwanted vaginal, oral, or anal penetration by an object or body part.
  • Forcing or manipulating you into doing unwanted, painful or degrading acts during intercourse.
  • Taking advantage of you while you’re drunk or otherwise not likely to give consent.
  • Denying you contraception or protection against sexually transmitted diseases.
  • Taking any kind of sexual pictures or film of you without your consent.
  • Forcing you to perform sexual acts on film or in person
  • Threatening to break up with you if you refuse sex.
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