Often when something traumatic happens to a child such as sexual and physical abuse, kidnapping, rape or abduction the child goes into quiet shock and starts to live in fear. As adults we do not believe that our children will fall prey to predators. It cannot happen to our kids, but it does, with grim consequences. It is only when the child starts to hurt others do we notice that something is wrong. The child is silent. He is sullen and depressed. He does not mix with other kids. He has low self-esteem and thinks everyone loathes him. In fact, he hates himself. When you notice this kind of behaviour it is best to consult an expert who can diagnose the problem and tell you what to do. The sooner your child seeks treatment to, the better chance he or she has with therapy which can lead to a better and healthy life.
Signs that your child has been deeply frightened or abused
- Your child comes home from school and appears different. She is quiet and does not approach you like she usually does. When you ask her what is wrong she looks down at her feet and says nothing. You don’t give it much thought but then notice other things like staying in her room all afternoon, not eating, and getting thin.
- The child is afraid to go to sleep and has night terrors where she sometimes gets out of bed in her sleep.
- The child behaves oddly in front of boys.
- She believes she is ugly and unattractive and has low self-esteem and zero confidence.
- The child does not speak much and does not trust anyone. She is sometimes rude and aggressive and at other times passive and withdrawn.
- She is inattentive at school and does not care whether she passes or fails.
- The child is sad and depressed and has thoughts of suicide.
These are serious indications that your child suffers abuse and still under the control of the abuser. The authorities knock on your door. Child abuse is a serious crime. She needs therapy to deal with her emotions and will probably need it for a very long time. The sooner your child seeks help, the better the outcome.