Every day, children witness the act of violence. These children are exposed to family violence in their homes. These homes have turned from being a place for safety and nurturing for children to a battleground where anxiety, anger, confusion, fear, and disruption are the essential trend in the home life tapestry. According to Straus (et al., 2017), the authors indicate that children who witness violence are always victims or abuser of domestic violence. The reason as to why the author came up with this statement is that family violence is always a cycle that is difficult to do away with.
According to Herman (2015), the authors states that not all children who witness violent grow up to be violent. He argues that family violence is a mentality and an excuse that most of the victims and perpetrators use to convince the world that their actions result from their upbringing (Herman, 2015). Moreover, some children do not have to witness a repeat of some experience they were exposed to when they were growing up. The reason is that most of these children are unhappy with what they witness, and they try their best not to copy the same mistakes as their parents. Therefore, children who grew up in abusive and violent families may grow up feeling depressed and anxious and find it difficult to expose others to violence (Herman, 2015). The paper would discuss the reason as to why witnessing family violence may not cause a child to grow up violent.
According to Herman (2015), the author states that not all children who witness violence grow up to be violent. The reason is that the learning of a child always begins at birth. A toddler learns from cognitive experiences. However, as the child grows up, he will be in a position to decide on what he/she should copy from a parent (Herman, 2015). At first, this experience may be, but they would learn to live with them. The long term impacts of family violence that makes a child not to grow up being violent are that the child will be depressed and develop the feeling of anxiety. The child would witness some outcomes of family violence that would traumatize them (Herman, 2015). Lastly, the child would always feel pity for the abused parent and assume the parental role by offering him/her emotional support.
A child who witnesses family violence will cut the close relationship with his/her parents more so the abuser. The reason is that the child will grow to hate the perpetrator of this violence and would not want to associate with them (Izaguirre & Calvete, 2015). Besides, children always learn from their parent. However, in this case, some children only acquire some positive characters from their parents and would always want to disassociate from any adverse character (Herman, 2015). A child would distance him/herself from the abuser because he/she will feel that the parent is the cause of all the instability in the house and the parent is responsible for all the physical, emotional, and psychological effects he/she has been passing through in his/her life (Izaguirre & Calvete, 2015). Therefore, the child will not take the parent as his/her role model making him/her not to adopt the detrimental practices the parents are involved in such as family violence.
Assuming Parental Role
A child who witnesses family violence may not involve in violent activities as he/she grow up in that he/she may have learned to be responsible as he/she grows up. According to Izaguirre and Calvete (2015), these children always feel neglected by their parents and start assuming the parental role in the family. The children will admire how some children are treated and act and would want to adopt some of these characters. Besides, the eldest child would always try to take care of his/her siblings by showing them love and support in whatever they do. Additionally, the eldest child will always attempt to separate these fights because he/she is well-informed of the effects of violence on a person (Izaguirre & Calvete, 2015). This action will make the children grow to be responsible and not to imitate their parents. Moreover, the children always pity the abused parent and show them love and care to make them grow not wishing other people such experiences. Therefore, assuming the role of a parent will make the children not to grow up being violent.
Depression and Anxiety
Anxiety and depression that children will be experiencing from witnessing family violence as they grow up will prevent them from becoming violent. According to Herman, (2015), the author argues that depression and anxiety will always haunt these individuals making them not to become violent (Herman, 2015). The reason is that children always take domestic violence as a shameful secret and are not ready to share with their peers. Individuals do not always want to be involved in a shameful act in that they want to protect their image and reputation. These children shall have familiarized themselves with the adverse effects of domestic violence and would always want to do anything in their power for the ordeal not to repeat itself as they grow up (Herman, 2015). Therefore, the anxiety and depression that the children have faced through their development will force them not to be violent.
Most children who witness family violence at their home do end up having some adverse effects of the violence such as being violent. However, some authors have disagreed with this statement in that they indicate that some children who witness violence do not grow up to be violent. These reasons are that these children learn from experience and they end up doing away with the adverse characters exhibited by their parents. The factors that make the children violent are that these experiences of witnessing family violence may be, but they would learn to live with them. Besides, some children who are neglected by their parents will assume the parental role of taking care of themselves. This action will mold them for the future. Moreover, the experience will make the children distance themselves from their parent, making them not to acquire some of their practices such as family violence. Lastly, the depression and the feeling of anxiety that the children will have will make them expose any individual to violent act as they grow up.
Herman, J. L. (2015). Trauma and recovery: The aftermath of violence--from domestic abuse to political terror. Hachette UK.
Izaguirre, A., & Calvete, E. (2015). Children who are exposed to intimate partner violence: Interviewing mothers to understand its impact on children. Child abuse & neglect, 48, 58-67.
Straus, M. A., Gelles, R. J., & Steinmetz, S. K. (2017). Behind closed doors: Violence in the American family. Routledge.
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