Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Spurned Child Syndrome

The above image stolen [from here]

Either, or both, parents can pick one or more of their children that they'll spurn for a variety of reasons, or excuses.

A parent that resents a child for not having it as difficult, stressful, and for not having to do without enough food, parent attention, clothing, etc. will want to make their chosen child similarly suffer. A younger, or middle child, might resent their oldest sibling, and take it out on their oldest child. Many times the spurned child is of the same sex as the parent spurning them.

A child showing signs of joy, being relaxed, and content might be met with a parent ready to punish, and to cause as much stress and disruption in a child's sense of security, and even an adult child's life. This parental behavior can go from crib to grave, if the spurned child dies first.

No friend, spouse, significant other, job, school is good enough, or is too good. There will be constant comparisons, unsolicited advice, and the parent of their spurned children will do all they can unconsciously, or even overtly, to cause problems in relationships their spurned child has with others. They'll often automatically take the other side in any dispute. If there is divorce, the spouse that had everything wrong with him, or her, will suddenly become the most perfect, and worst loss. "You'll never get another one like that again".

In order for a spurned child to have any success in relationships, in jobs, in education, and in life, they must refuse to take any advice, and keep most information, significant others, friends, and any career interaction separate from a parent that underlying wants the worst for their spurned child.

A spurned child who doesn't self-heal, or seek professional help, might be more prone to suicide, drug and alcohol abuse, sexual abuse, seeking another abuser, temper problems, a higher likelihood to end up in legal trouble, in prison, and/or may suffer other health, emotional, and physical problems.

Children of spurned children might be the ignored grandchildren, and the parents of the spurned child may similarly consider and treat their own grand kids as they did their own spurned child, or children.

Holidays, weddings, birthdays, special family gatherings, and formal events are the easiest venues to see this phenomenon for yourself. A parent will compliment and show positive attention to others, their other children, and the general public. The spurned child will get negative attention, be insulted, and every action they take, or word they utter, is under the abuser's microscope. The spurned child may choose to elope to avoid having the abusing parent part of any ceremony.

Having no desire to seek the parent's approval, goes the longest way to healing. Tune out, the endless tape of abuse of parent statements, remembering physical and emotional trauma, and do what you can not to suffer PTSD symptoms. Figure it is the parent's mental health problem, and condition, not yours.

Spurning a child is emotional abuse. Consider the child, try to educate the abusive parent if you think it safe to do so. If not, consider reporting the abuse to authorities, as with spurning a child, often other types of abuse are taking place.

Comparing health, dental, and other records of other children in the family can identify the spurned child. Does the child get less clothing, birthday and holiday presents than other siblings? Is there sympathy for other children when they suffer, are injured, or are rushed to the hospital, and the spurned child is accused of just "Trying to get attention"?

Parents should exorcise their own demons before even considering having children. We have had enough serial killers, suicides, and those that become common criminal parasites, and/or perpetual prison inmates.

Follow your own dreams, march to the tune of your own drummer, and consult the person most in your corner first, yourself.

-Steven G. Erickson

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Does George W. Bush suffer a form of the "Spurned Child Syndrome"? [Click Here for OpEd News piece]

The Misunderestimated Man

How Bush chose stupidity.

Was he born that way?Adapted from the introduction to The Deluxe Election-Edition Bushisms, published by Fireside Books/Simon & Schuster. Reprinted with permission; © 2004 Jacob Weisberg.

The question I am most frequently asked about Bushisms is, "Do you really think the president of the United States is dumb?"

The short answer is yes.

The long answer is yes and no.

Quotations collected over the years in Slate may leave the impression that George W. Bush is a dimwit. Let's face it: A man who cannot talk about education without making a humiliating grammatical mistake ("The illiteracy level of our children are appalling"); who cannot keep straight the three branches of government ("It's the executive branch's job to interpret law"); who coins ridiculous words ("Hispanos," "arbolist," "subliminable," "resignate," "transformationed"); who habitually says the opposite of what he intends ("the death tax is good for people from all walks of life!") sounds like a grade-A imbecile.

And if you don't care to pursue the matter any further, that view will suffice. George W. Bush has governed, for the most part, the way any airhead might, undermining the fiscal condition of the nation, squandering the goodwill of the world after Sept. 11, and allowing huge problems (global warming, entitlement spending, AIDS) to metastasize toward catastrophe through a combination of ideology, incomprehension, and indifference. If Bush isn't exactly the moron he sounds, his synaptic misfirings offer a plausible proxy for the idiocy of his presidency.

In reality, however, there's more to it. Bush's assorted malapropisms, solecisms, gaffes, spoonerisms, and truisms tend to imply that his lack of fluency in English is tantamount to an absence of intelligence. But as we all know, the inarticulate can be shrewd, the fluent fatuous. In Bush's case, the symptoms point to a specific malady—some kind of linguistic deficit akin to dyslexia—that does not indicate a lack of mental capacity per se.

Bush also compensates with his non-verbal acumen. As he notes, "Smart comes in all kinds of different ways." The president's way is an aptitude for connecting to people through banter and physicality. He has a powerful memory for names, details, and figures that truly matter to him, such as batting averages from the 1950s. Bush also has a keen political sense, sharpened under the tutelage of Karl Rove.

What's more, calling the president a cretin absolves him of responsibility. Like Reagan, Bush avoids blame for all manner of contradictions, implausible assertions, and outright lies by appearing an amiable dunce. If he knows not what he does, blame goes to the three puppeteers, Cheney, Rove, and Rumsfeld. It also breeds sympathy. We wouldn't laugh at FDR because he couldn't walk. Is it less cruel to laugh at GWB because he can't talk? The soft bigotry of low expectations means Bush is seen to outperform by merely getting by. Finally, elitist condescension, however merited, helps cement Bush's bond to the masses.

But if "numskull" is an imprecise description of the president, it is not altogether inaccurate. Bush may not have been born stupid, but he has achieved stupidity, and now he wears it as a badge of honor. What makes mocking this president fair as well as funny is that Bush is, or at least once was, capable of learning, reading, and thinking. We know he has discipline and can work hard (at least when the goal is reducing his time for a three-mile run). Instead he chose to coast, for most of his life, on name, charm, good looks, and the easy access to capital afforded by family connections.

The most obvious expression of Bush's choice of ignorance is that, at the age of 57, he knows nothing about policy or history. After years of working as his dad's spear-chucker in Washington, he didn't understand the difference between Medicare and Medicaid, the second- and third-largest federal programs. Well into his plans for invading Iraq, Bush still couldn't get down the distinction between Sunni and Shiite Muslims, the key religious divide in a country he was about to occupy. Though he sometimes carries books for show, he either does not read them or doesn't absorb anything from them. Bush's ignorance is so transparent that many of his intimates do not bother to dispute it even in public. Consider the testimony of several who know him well.

Richard Perle, foreign policy adviser: "The first time I met Bush 43 … two things became clear. One, he didn't know very much. The other was that he had the confidence to ask questions that revealed he didn't know very much."

David Frum, former speechwriter: "Bush had a poor memory for facts and figures. … Fire a question at him about the specifics of his administration's policies, and he often appeared uncertain. Nobody would ever enroll him in a quiz show."

Laura Bush, spouse: "George is not an overly introspective person. He has good instincts, and he goes with them. He doesn't need to evaluate and reevaluate a decision. He doesn't try to overthink. He likes action."

Paul O'Neill, former treasury secretary: "The only way I can describe it is that, well, the President is like a blind man in a roomful of deaf people. There is no discernible connection."

A second, more damning aspect of Bush's mind-set is that he doesn't want to know anything in detail, however important. Since college, he has spilled with contempt for knowledge, equating learning with snobbery and making a joke of his own anti-intellectualism. ("[William F. Buckley] wrote a book at Yale; I read one," he quipped at a black-tie event.) By O'Neill's account, Bush could sit through an hourlong presentation about the state of the economy without asking a single question. ("I was bored as hell," the president shot back, ostensibly in jest.)

Closely related to this aggressive ignorance is a third feature of Bush's mentality: laziness. Again, this is a lifelong trait. Bush's college grades were mostly Cs (including a 73 in Introduction to the American Political System). At the start of one term, the star of the Yale football team spotted him in the back row during the shopping period for courses. "Hey! George Bush is in this class!" Calvin Hill shouted to his teammates. "This is the one for us!" As governor of Texas, Bush would take a long break in the middle of his short workday for a run followed by a stretch of video golf or computer solitaire.

A fourth and final quality of Bush's mind is that it does not think. The president can't tolerate debate about issues. Offered an option, he makes up his mind quickly and never reconsiders. At an elementary school, a child once asked him whether it was hard to make decisions as president. "Most of the decisions come pretty easily for me, to be frank with you." By leaping to conclusions based on what he "believes," Bush avoids contemplating even the most obvious basic contradictions: between his policy of tax cuts and reducing the deficit; between his call for a humble foreign policy based on alliances and his unilateral assertion of American power; between his support for in-vitro fertilization (which destroys embryos) and his opposition to fetal stem-cell research (because it destroys embryos).

Why would someone capable of being smart choose to be stupid? To understand, you have to look at W.'s relationship with father. This filial bond involves more tension than meets the eye. Dad was away for much of his oldest son's childhood. Little George grew up closer to his acid-tongued mother and acted out against the absent parent—through adolescent misbehavior, academic failure, dissipation, and basically not accomplishing anything at all until well into his 40s.

Dubya's youthful screw-ups and smart-aleck attitude reflect some combination of protest, plea for attention, and flailing attempt to compete. Until a decade ago, his résumé read like a send-up of his dad's. Bush senior was a star student at Andover and Phi Beta Kappa at Yale, where he was also captain of the baseball team; Junior struggled through with gentleman's C's and, though he loved baseball, couldn't make the college lineup. Père was a bomber pilot in the Pacific; fils sat out 'Nam in the Texas Air National Guard, where he lost flying privileges by not showing up. Dad drove to Texas in 1947 to get rich in the oil business and actually did; Son tried the same in 1975 and drilled dry holes for a decade. Bush the elder got elected to Congress in 1966; Shrub ran in 1978, didn't know what he was talking about, and got clobbered.

Through all this incompetent emulation runs an undercurrent of hostility. In an oft-told anecdote circa 1973, GWB—after getting wasted at a party and driving over a neighbor's trash can in Houston—challenged his dad. "I hear you're lookin' for me," W. told the chairman of the Republican National Committee. "You want to go mano a mano right here?" Some years later at a state dinner, he told the Queen of England he was being seated far away because he was the black sheep of the family.

After half a lifetime of this kind of frustration, Bush decided to straighten up. Nursing a hangover at a 40th-birthday weekend, he gave up Wild Turkey, cold turkey. With the help of Billy Graham, he put himself in the hands of a higher power and began going to church. He became obsessed with punctuality and developed a rigid routine. Thus did Prince Hal molt into an evangelical King Henry. And it worked! Putting together a deal to buy the Texas Rangers, the ne'er-do-well finally tasted success. With success, he grew closer to his father, taking on the role of family avenger. This culminated in his 1994 challenge to Texas Gov. Ann Richards, who had twitted dad at the 1988 Democratic convention*.

Curiously, this late arrival at adulthood did not involve Bush becoming in any way thoughtful. Having chosen stupidity as rebellion, he stuck with it out of conformity. The promise-keeper, reformed-alkie path he chose not only drastically curtailed personal choices he no longer wanted, it also supplied an all-encompassing order, offered guidance on policy, and prevented the need for much actual information. Bush's old answer to hard questions was, "I don't know and, who cares." His new answer was, "Wait a second while I check with Jesus."

A remaining bit of poignancy was his unresolved struggle with his father. "All I ask," he implored a reporter while running for governor in 1994, "is that for once you guys stop seeing me as the son of George Bush." In his campaigns, W. has kept his dad offstage. (In an exceptional appearance on the eve of the 2000 New Hampshire primary, 41 came onstage and called his son "this boy.") While some describe the second Bush presidency as a restoration, it is in at least equal measure a repudiation. The son's harder-edged conservatism explicitly rejects the old man's approach to such issues as abortion, taxes, and relations with Israel.

This Oedipally induced ignorance expresses itself most dangerously in Bush's handling of the war in Iraq. Dubya polished off his old man's greatest enemy, Saddam, but only by lampooning 41's accomplishment of coalition-building in the first Gulf War. Bush led the country to war on false pretenses and neglected to plan the occupation that would inevitably follow. A more knowledgeable and engaged president might have questioned the quality of the evidence about Iraq's supposed weapons programs. One who preferred to be intelligent might have asked about the possibility of an unfriendly reception. Instead, Bush rolled the dice. His budget-busting tax cuts exemplify a similar phenomenon, driven by an alternate set of ideologues.

As the president says, we misunderestimate him. He was not born stupid. He chose stupidity. Bush may look like a well-meaning dolt. On consideration, he's something far more dangerous: a dedicated fool.

Correction, May 7, 2004: This article originally misstated the date of the Democratic convention where Ann Richards twitted President George H.W. Bush. It was 1988 not 1992. Return to the corrected sentence.

The above [found here]

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The below [found here]

Introduction: Child Neglect and Abuse: Merck Manual Home Edition

Children can be mistreated by having essential things withheld from them (neglect) or by having harmful things done to them (abuse). Neglect involves not meeting children's basic needs: physical, medical, educational, and emotional. Emotional neglect is a part of emotional abuse. Abuse can be physical, sexual, or emotional. The different forms of abuse sometimes occur together. Child neglect and abuse often occur together and with other forms of family violence, such as spousal abuse. In addition to immediate harm, neglect and abuse cause long-lasting problems, including mental health problems and substance abuse. Also, adults who were physically or sexually abused as children are more likely to abuse their own children.

In the United States, more than 896,000 children are neglected or abused every year, and about 1,400 of them die. Neglect is about 3 times more common than physical abuse.

Neglect and abuse result from a complex combination of individual, family, and social factors. Being a single parent, being poor, having problems with drug or alcohol abuse, or having a mental health problem (such as a personality disorder or low self-esteem) can make a parent more likely to neglect or abuse a child. Neglect is 12 times more common among children living in poverty.

Doctors and nurses are required by law to promptly report cases of suspected child neglect or abuse to a local Child Protective Services agency. Health professionals should, but are not required to, tell parents that a report is being made according to the law and that they will be contacted, interviewed, and possibly visited at their home. Depending on the circumstances, the local law enforcement agency may also be notified. Prompt reporting is also required from all people whose job places children younger than 18 in their care. Such people include teachers, childcare workers, foster care providers, and police and legal services personnel. Anyone else who knows of or suspects neglect or abuse is encouraged to report it but is not required to do so.

All reported cases of child abuse are investigated by representatives of the local Child Protective Services agency, who determine the facts and make recommendations. Agency representatives may recommend social services (for the child and family members), temporary hospitalization, temporary foster care, or permanent termination of parental rights. Doctors and social workers help the representatives from the Child Protective Services agency decide what to do based on the immediate medical needs of the child, the seriousness of the harm, and the likelihood of further neglect or abuse.


There are a number of different types of child neglect and abuse.

Physical Neglect: Not meeting a child's essential needs for food, clothing, and shelter is the most basic form of neglect. But there are many other forms. Parents may not obtain preventive dental or medical care for the child, such as vaccinations and routine physical examinations. Parents may delay obtaining medical care when the child is ill, putting the child at risk of more severe illness and even death. Parents may not make sure the child attends school or is privately schooled. Parents may leave a child in the care of a person who is known to be abusive, or they may leave a young child unattended.

Physical Abuse: Physically mistreating or harming a child, including inflicting excessive physical punishment, is physical abuse. Children of any age may be physically abused, but infants and toddlers are particularly vulnerable. Physical abuse is the most common cause of serious head injury in infants. In toddlers, physical abuse is more likely to result in abdominal injuries, which may be fatal. Physical abuse (including homicide) is among the 10 leading causes of death in children. Generally, a child's risk of physical abuse decreases during the early school years and increases during adolescence.

More than three fourths of perpetrators of abuse are the child's parents. Children who are born in poverty to a young, single parent are at highest risk. Family stress contributes to physical abuse. Stress may result from unemployment, frequent moves to another home, social isolation from friends or family members, or ongoing family violence. Children who are difficult (irritable, demanding, or hyperactive) or who have special needs (developmental or physical disabilities) may be more likely to be physically abused. Physical abuse is often triggered by a crisis in the midst of other stresses. A crisis may be a loss of a job, a death in the family, or a discipline problem.

Sexual Abuse: Any action with a child that is for the sexual gratification of an adult or a significantly older child is considered sexual abuse. It includes penetrating the child's vagina, anus, or mouth; touching the child with sexual intention but without penetration, (molestation); exposing the genitals or showing pornography to a child; and using a child in the production of pornography. Sexual abuse does not include sexual play. In sexual play, children who are less than 4 years apart in age view or touch each other's genital area without force or coercion.

By the age of 18, about 12 to 25% of girls and 8 to 10% of boys have been sexually abused. Most perpetrators of sexual abuse are people known by the children, commonly a stepfather, an uncle, or the mother's boyfriend. Female perpetrators are less common.

Certain situations increase the risk of sexual abuse. For example, children who have several caregivers or a caregiver with several sex partners are at increased risk. Being socially isolated, having low self-esteem, having family members who are also sexually abused, or being associated with a gang also increases risk.

Emotional Abuse: Using words or acts to psychologically mistreat a child is emotional abuse. Emotional abuse makes children feel that they are worthless, flawed, unloved, unwanted, in danger, or valuable only when they meet another person's needs.

Emotional abuse includes spurning, exploiting, terrorizing, isolating, and neglecting. Spurning means belittling the child's abilities and accomplishments. Exploiting means encouraging deviant or criminal behavior, such as committing crimes or abusing alcohol or drugs. Terrorizing means bullying, threatening, or frightening the child. Isolating means not allowing the child to interact with other adults or children. Emotionally neglecting a child means ignoring and not interacting with the child; the child is not given love and attention. Emotional abuse tends to occur over a long period of time.

Münchausen by Proxy: In this unusual type of child abuse, a caregiver, usually the mother, exaggerates, fakes, or causes an illness in the child (see Somatoform Disorders: Munchausen Syndrome: Faking Illness for AttentionSidebar).


The symptoms of neglect and abuse vary depending partly on the nature and duration of the neglect or abuse, on the child, and on the particular circumstances. In addition to obvious physical injuries, symptoms include emotional and mental health problems. Such problems may develop immediately or later and may persist.

Physical Neglect: Physically neglected children may appear undernourished, tired, or dirty or may lack appropriate clothing. They may frequently be absent from school. In extreme cases, children may be found living alone or with siblings, without adult supervision. Physical and emotional development may be slow. Some neglected children die of starvation or exposure.

Physical Abuse: Bruises, burns, welts, or scrapes are common signs of physical abuse. These marks often have the shape of the object used to inflict them, such as a belt or lamp cord. Cigarette or scald burns may be visible on the arms or legs. Severe injuries to the mouth, eyes, brain, or other internal organs may be present but not visible. Children may have signs of old injuries, such as broken bones, which have healed. Sometimes injuries result in disfigurement.

Toddlers who have been intentionally dunked into a hot bathtub have scald burns. These burns may be located on the buttocks and may be shaped like a doughnut. The splash of hot water may cause small burns on other parts of the body.

Infants who are shaken may have shaken baby (shaken impact) syndrome. This syndrome is caused by violent shaking, often followed by throwing the infant. Infants who are shaken may have no visible signs of injury and may appear to be sleeping deeply. This sleepiness is due to brain damage and swelling, which may result from bleeding between the brain and skull (subdural hemorrhage). Infants may also have bleeding in the retina (retinal hemorrhage) at the back of the eye. Ribs and other bones may be broken.

Children who have been abused for a long time are often fearful and irritable. They often sleep poorly. They may be depressed and anxious. They are more likely to act in violent, criminal, or suicidal ways.

Sexual Abuse: Changes in behavior are common. Such changes may occur abruptly and may be extreme. Children may become aggressive or withdrawn or develop phobias or sleep disorders. Children who are sexually abused may behave in sexual ways inappropriate for their age. Children who are sexually abused by a parent or other family member may have conflicted feelings. They may feel emotionally close to the offender, yet betrayed.

Sexual abuse may also result in physical injuries. Children may have bruises, tears, or bleeding in areas around the genitals, rectum, or mouth. Injuries in the genital and rectal areas may make walking and sitting difficult. Girls may have a vaginal discharge. A sexually transmitted disease, such as gonorrhea, chlamydial infection, or sometimes human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, may be present.

Emotional Abuse: In general, children who are emotionally abused tend to be insecure and anxious about their attachments to other people because they have not had their needs met consistently or predictably. Infants who are emotionally neglected may seem unemotional or uninterested in their surroundings. Their behavior may be mistaken for mental retardation or a physical disorder. Children who are emotionally neglected may lack social skills or be slow to develop speech and language skills. Children who are spurned may have low self-esteem. Children who are exploited may commit crimes or abuse alcohol or drugs. Children who are terrorized may appear fearful and withdrawn. They may be distrustful, unassertive, and extremely anxious to please adults. They may inappropriately reach out to strangers. Children who are isolated may be awkward in social situations and have difficulty forming normal relationships. Older children may not attend school regularly or may not perform well when they do attend.


Neglect and abuse are often difficult to recognize unless children appear severely undernourished or are obviously injured or unless neglect or abuse is witnessed by other people. Neglect and abuse may not be recognized for years. There are many reasons for this difficulty. Abused children may feel that abuse is a normal part of life and may not mention it. Physically and sexually abused children are often reluctant to volunteer information about their abuse because of shame, threats of retaliation, or even a feeling that they deserved the abuse. Physically abused children often describe what happened to them if asked directly, but sexually abused children may be sworn to secrecy or so traumatized that they are not able to talk about the abuse.

When doctors suspect neglect or any type of abuse, they look for signs of other types of abuse. They also fully evaluate the physical, environmental, emotional, and social needs of the child.

Physical Neglect: A neglected child is usually identified by health care practitioners or social workers during evaluation of an unrelated issue, such as an injury, an illness, or a behavioral problem. Doctors may notice that a child is not developing physically or emotionally at a normal rate or has missed many vaccinations or appointments. Teachers may identify a neglected child because of frequent unexplained absences from school. If neglect is suspected, doctors often check for anemia, infections, and lead poisoning, which are common among neglected children.

Physical Abuse: Physical abuse may be suspected when an infant who is not yet walking has bruises or serious injuries. Abuse may be suspected when a toddler or older child has certain types of bruises, such as bruises on the back of the legs, buttocks, and torso. When children are learning to walk, bruises often result, but such bruises typically occur on prominent bony areas on the front of the body, such as the knees, shins, forehead, chin, and elbows.

Abuse may also be suspected when parents seem to know little about their child's health or seem unconcerned about an obvious injury. Parents who abuse their child may be reluctant to describe to the doctor or friends how an injury occurred. The description may not fit the age and nature of the injury or may change each time the story is told.

If doctors suspect physical abuse, they obtain accurate drawings and photographs of the injuries. Sometimes x-rays are taken to look for signs of previous injuries. Often, if a child is younger than 2 years, x-rays of all bones are taken to check for fractures.

Sexual Abuse: Often, sexual abuse is diagnosed on the basis of the child's or a witness's account of the incident. However, because many children are reluctant to talk about sexual abuse, it may be suspected only because the child's behavior becomes abnormal. If a child has been sexually abused within 72 hours, doctors examine the child to collect legal evidence of sexual contact, such as swabs of body fluids and hair samples from the genital area. Photographs of any visible injuries are taken. In some communities, health care practitioners who are specially trained to evaluate sexual abuse of children perform this examination.

Emotional Abuse: Emotional abuse is usually identified during evaluation of another problem, such as poor performance in school or a behavioral problem. Children who are emotionally abused are checked for signs of physical and sexual abuse.


A team of doctors, other health care practitioners, and social workers tries to deal with the causes and effects of neglect and abuse. The team helps family members understand the child's needs and helps them access local resources. For example, a child whose parents cannot afford health care may qualify for medical assistance from the state. Other community and government programs can provide assistance with food and shelter. Parents with substance abuse problems or mental health problems may be directed to appropriate treatment programs. Parenting programs are available in some areas.

All physical injuries and disorders are treated. Some children are hospitalized for treatment of injuries, severe undernutrition, or other disorders. Some severe injuries require surgery. Infants with shaken baby syndrome usually need to be admitted to a pediatric intensive care unit. Sometimes healthy children are hospitalized to protect them from further abuse until appropriate home care can be ensured.

Some children who have been sexually abused are given drugs to prevent sexually transmitted diseases, sometimes including HIV infection. Children who appear to be very upset need immediate counseling and support. Sexually abused children, even those who appear unaffected initially, are referred to a mental health care practitioner because long-lasting problems are common. Long-term psychologic counseling is often needed. Doctors refer children with other types of abuse for counseling if behavioral or emotional problems develop.

The goal of treatment is to return children to a safe, healthy family environment. Depending on the nature of the abuse and the abuser, children may go home with their family members or may be removed from their home and placed with relatives or in foster care. This placement is often temporary, for example, until the parents obtain housing or employment or until regular home visits by a social worker are established. In severe cases of neglect or abuse, the parents' rights may be permanently terminated. In such cases, the child remains in foster care until the child is adopted or becomes an adult (see Social Issues Affecting Children and Their Families: Foster Care).

Last full review/revision May 2006 by Ann S. Botash, MD


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Author Holly Schlaack's book tells the heartbreaking stories and we want to turn away our eyes. Holly Schlaack's experience comes from firsthand involvement with abused children and although their circumstances are wrenching, she works to create avenues out of their suffering. The book reveals the gaps in the foster care system as well as the successes. Any professional or private citizen will find Invisible Kids inspiring and challenging. (

Thursday, January 15, 2009 11:04:00 PM  

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