Living 'happily ever after' is uncommon after prolonged periods of childhood abuse. It's more like a near-fatal auto accident from which the victims retain permanent scars, but press on through life despite their lingering disabilities. In the case of Tony's family, a sadistic and malevolent mother was allowed to run unfettered thanks to a feckless father and an uninformed and impotent local system of child protective services.
Abused children are more likely to suffer from attention-deficit disorders, behavioral problems, reduced cognitive development, language deficiencies, emotional instability, poor self-regulation, low self-esteem, and an inability to cope with new or stressful situations. All of these attributes are significant factors in school readiness.
Prompt and effective responses to abuse can ameliorate or protect against many of these negative effects. If you suspect abuse, don't wait until you can 'prove' it. Make a report whenever your worries about the safety of a child turn into suspicions that the child is being mistreated. If the abuse is happening right now, report it right now!
If you need help or have questions about child abuse, call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-422-4453. Hotline counselors are available 365 days a year to help children and adults who are worried about children they suspect are being abused. You can call this number if you live in the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Guam, or the U.S. Virgin Islands. The call is both free and anonymous.

Published: iUniverseBooks on
ISBN: 9780595893409
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