Domestic Violence

The effects on New Zealand Children

What is Domestic Violence and how does this affect our children.

Domestic Violence isn‟t just about hitting it also covers..

Physical Abuse:

◦ Hitting, punching, kicking, cornering or standing over you, poking, shoving, burning, spitting on you, pulling hair, holding you down or restraining you.

Financial abuse:

◦ He or she may withhold money, take your income, threaten to take your belongings and house. Forcing a child to live in poverty.

Sexual abuse:

◦ Forcing you or your children to have sexual relations. Or inappropriate touching or exposure

What is Domestic Violence and how does this affect our children.

I have highlighted this issue as children may be indirectly affected by psychological violence It is the most common reason women seek help, and has been described as the worst type of violence, as it is insidious. A child may witness or experience these issues. Threatening behaviour, stalking, hurting animals, smashing things, hearing their mum being called fat, lazy, crazy.

Psychological Violence

 

Blame‟s you, criticises you and puts you down, Makes excuses, denies the abuse, tells you what you should or should not wear, Makes you live in fear, lets the children witness this behaviour, Threatens to call C.Y.F‟s on you, keeps you up all night yelling at you, Doesn‟t allow friends in your life, humiliates you in front of others.

Psychological Violence

A child may experience a variety of reactions, 70% of what children pick up from a violent home are non-verbal interactions. Body language, tension, even no communication is all absorbed by a child.

How the child’s Health and Wellbeing may be affected.

Health, Developmental and Emotional problems develop.
Physically “Brain development can be negatively affected, and research has linked abuse with a range of poor health outcomes.”(NAIC2004)

The child may experience physical injuries. Or may become involved in self harming behaviours.

How Hauora is affected physically.

Sleep disturbances, nightmares, anger outbursts, bullying, depression, over or under achieving, Anxiety symptoms, i.e. headaches, tummy aches. Chronic anxiety reduces a child’s learning capacity. Hiding, shaking, stuttering, bedwetting The child may become withdrawn, isolate, live in fear. The child may experience lowered self esteem and self worth.

How Hauora is affected Psychologically/Spiritually.

This wheel represents the Power and Control cycle of Domestic Violence.

Duluth Wheel of Violence

„They may feel guilt at not being able to protect their parent‟. „They learn that to love someone is to accept abuse from them‟. „They cannot relax or feel secure‟. „They learn victimised behaviours‟. „They learn that abuse is acceptable to resolve conflict‟.

What children learn.

“This study suggests that a quarter of young adults have been exposed to acts or threats of violence carried out by one parent toward another parent, and the majority found such witnessing to be a very upsetting experience. Public education programmes should emphasise that all violence carries risk of harm to all family members.” Journal of the New Zealand Medical Association.

What can we do about it?

Schools follow their individual policies on reporting abuse to C.Y.Fs

“Keeping ourselves safe” . A programme which educates children and young people in Schools, on how to keep safe from abuse. This project incorporates police and teaching staff
Http://www.police.govt.nz/service/yes/resources/violence/kos.html

Education, what can we do?

Ministry of health Website http://www.moh.govt.n z/familyviolence

Child Youth and Family http://www.cyf.govt.nz/1 848.htm  Preventing Violence in the Home

“If you are staying in an abusive environment, you are unintentionally abusing your child” Women's Refuge 2005

http://www.preventing violence.org.nz/index .php?section=63

Other sources of support for suspected Child Abuse.

Establish a safe person a child can trust and talk too. Be aware of signs and symptoms of child abuse. Continue educating children on abuse and safety issues. Don‟t ignore the signs.

What we can do in a school setting.

Martin, J., Langley, J. & Millichamp, J. (2006). Domestic Violence as witnessed by NewZealand children. In Domestic violence as witnessed by New Zealand Children,119(1228). Retrieved May 24, 2009 from http://www.nzma.org.n z/journal/1191228/1817/

Definitions and Effects of Violence (2009), J., Women's Refuge. Retrieved May 24, 2009 from http://www.womensref uge.org.nz/index.cfm?o bjectid=0CFAF2DD1321-AE99692D294B9306068D

References

Keeping Ourselves Safe, J., Yes Resources: Violence Prevention. Retrieved May 24, 2009 from http://www.police.go vt.nz/service/yes/res ources/violence/kos.h tml

Family Violence, J., Family Violence. Retrieved May 23, 2009 from http://www.moh.govt .nz/familyviolence
Connolly, M. (2004). Violence in Society. In Violence in Society:New Zealand perspectives (p.20). Christchurch: Awatea Press.

References

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