Sample Essay

Words 1,603

Domestic violence affects children in varied and complex ways that can be displayed in their emotional, behavioral, social and physical development. These problems, when assessed with children who have not witnessed domestic violence, can include aggression, depression, anxiety, lower levels of self-esteem, and below-average academic performance.
Witnessing domestic violence, particularly when coupled with direct abuse or exposure to other forms of violence, also has been recognized as a likely influence and predictor of a child’s condoning or use of violence, mainly for boys. Children also might lose respect for their mother and women in general if her abuser continuously tells her she is worthless and unable to care for her children. These children also must vie with conflicting emotions about a father they both fear and love.


  • Shame, blame, and self-blame – “I caused it”, or “I should have been able to stop it”
  • Grief for family and personal losses
  • Bewilderment about conflicting feelings towards parents
  • Fear of abandonment, expressing emotions, of the unknown, and/or personal injury
  • Fury about violence and the chaos in their lives
  • Depression, feelings of helplessness and powerlessness
  • Uncomfortable by the effects of abuse and the dynamics at home

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