Au Psy492 M7 A2 Inman R
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Au Psy492 M7 A2 Inman R

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  • This is a social problem that is often over-looked as long as the children themselves are not being abused. Even though there may not be any physical damage to children exposed to domestic violence the psychological effects can last a life time. If intervention is not given to these children at an early stage of life, their development process is damaged and the cycle of abuse is likely to continue(Cummings, et al., 1989, as cited in Jarvis et al., 2005).
  • Lack of treatment will leave these children vulnerable to psychological disorders and they will be high risk to repeating the cycle of violence (Cummings, et al., 1989, as cited in Jarvis et al., 2005).
  • Studies have repeatedly shown that children that witness domestic violence have similar psychological distress as compared to children who are both witness and victims of abuse (Cummings, et al., 1989, as cited in Jarvis et al., 2005).
  • “Stick and stones may break your bones but words will forever harm me” (Irving, 2004).
  • Research shows that highly stressful environments are known to support the development of of aggressive behavior in adolescent’s and beyond (Lawson, 2001). Research shows that highly stressful environments are known to support the development of of aggressive behavior in adolescent’s and beyond (Lawson, 2001).
  • The early combination of witnessing or directly experiencing violence, shaming, and insecure attachments often leds to the development of abusive personality in males (Lawson, 2001).
  • Criminal proceedings are being implemented into the criminal justice system regarding children that are exposed to domestic violence (Jaffe, Crooks, Wolfe, 2003).
  • Although society is beginning to accept childhood exposure to domestic violence as a crime, there is still a long way to go to overcome the issue.

Au Psy492 M7 A2 Inman R Au Psy492 M7 A2 Inman R Presentation Transcript

  • children exposed to domestic violence
    Psychological Effects
  • Psychological effects
    • Anxiety disorders
    • Post traumatic stress disorders
    • Loss of interest in school
    • Substance abuse
    • Delinquency
    • Inability to seek healthy relationships
    • Self-blame attitude (Cummings, et al., 1989, as cited in Jarvis et al., 2005).
  • Psychological distress of children and mothers in domestic violence emergency shelters
    • Display an increased sensitivity to angry adult interactions
    • Respond with sadness, fear, anger, and stress
    • PTSD symptomatology
    • Internalizing and externalizing behavior problems (Cummings, et al., 1989, as cited in Jarvis et al., 2005).
  • The pain of domestic violence exposure
    Words do hurt
  • Environmental influences, the developing brain, and aggressive behavior
    “Trauma research suggests that the brain may undergo neurobiological change in a region called the hypothalmo-pituitary axis (HPA) that triggers a stress response” (Hudley, Novac, n.d).
  • The development of abusive personality: A trauma response
    • Witnessing violence, experiencing violence, shaming, and insecure attachments, may lead to the development of abusive personalities in males.
    • These males show difficulty in redirecting their aggression towards others
    • These males have a high chance of becoming partner abusers (Lawson, 2001).
  • Legal and policy responses to children exposed to domestic violence: The need to evaluate intended and unintended consequences
    • Child witness to domestic violence is now being considered a secondary crime to domestic violence
    • Child witness to domestic violence is being factored into criminal sentencing is some states
    • In other states such as Oregon and Utah, exposure to domestic violence is being considered a separate charge (Jaffe, Crooks, Wolfe, 2003).
  • Next steps in research on children exposed to domestic violence:
    • Broader, more inclusive definitions of violence are needed
    • In order to examine different perspectives multiple reporters are needed
    • Valid and informative measures of violence are needed fro identification and assessment
    • More studies are needed that examine the effects of domestic violence
    • Research is needed that examines the medical and health consequences (Prinz, Feerick, 2003).
  • References
    Hudley, C., Novac, A. (n.d.). Environmental influences, the developing brain, and aggressive behavior. Theory into Practice. 46(2), 121-129 
    Irving, M. (2004). Emotional abuse. Retrieved from http://www.irvingstudios.com/child_abuse_survivor_monument/EmotionalAbuse.htm
    Jaffe, P., Crooks, C. Wolfe, D. (2003). Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review, 6 (3)
    Jarvis, J., Gordon, E., Novaco, R. (2005). Psychological distress of children and mothers in domestic violence emergency shelters. Journal of Family Violence, 20(6), DOI: 10.1007/s10896-005-7800-1
    Lawson, D. M. (2001). The development of abusive personality. Journal of counseling and development. 79 (4), 505
  • References continued
    Prinz, R., Feerick, M. (2003). Next steps in research on children exposed to domestic violence. Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review, 6 (3)