PROTECTION AGAINST CHILD ABUSE IN HOUSTON
Everyone can agree that a child should not suffer abuse at the hands of someone who is supposed to care and provide for him. In addition, child abuse can ruin a child’s future. Abused children do not mature sufficiently and may develop a range of anti-social and self-destructive behaviors and thoughts in adulthood. Abuse leaves a child believing that he is not worthy, and she may become withdrawn and unable to cultivate good relationships later in life. Some abused children must go through years of counseling before being able to function adequately as an adult. Abuse can be physical, emotional or sexual. If this is happening in your home, or if an ex-spouse is abusing your child, you have a moral and legal duty to act. An experienced family and divorce lawyer can guide you towards the right course of action.
TYPES OF CHILD ABUSE
Physical abuse can involve hitting, slapping, confining or denial of food. While reasonable discipline is lawful, excessive physical discipline is simply an Assault and harmful to the child. Emotional abuse can be as painful to a child as hitting. This involves degrading statements, continual criticism, angry outbursts, and threats to harm the child or pets. The continual fear this type of abuse causes diminishes the child’s self-esteem and thought patterns.
Sexual abuse can occur over time and is always secretive. It can start as fondling and later turn to sexual intercourse. Either sex can be affected. The child is not likely to come forward immediately to report sexual abuse. The child may be threatened not to tell or feels responsible for the actions of the adult abuser. The child may feel dependent on the love of the abuser and fear the breakup of the family if he or she talks.
It is vital for the other parent to be watchful and on the alert for signs. The child may talk about the abuse only indirectly, and it may take more pointed communication for the child to open up and talk about it. It is important not to discount anything a child says about sexual abuse. A parent should always further investigate the signs of sexual abuse.
HELPING VICTIMS OF CHILD ABUSE
Chernoff Law is a family law firm dedicated to assisting the victims of child abuse, spousal abuse and all forms of domestic violence. We know how to help, and we can help you take advantage of the legal tools that are available, including protective orders, restraining orders, and criminal referral to the District Attorney’s Office. It is the parent’s duty to act and we consider it our job to show the way.