While there isnt a nailed down definition of child abuse and neglect, and different states and localities have their own definitions, it can be simplified to a general explanation. ???Child abuse, or neglect, is the failure of a parent or caretaker to act, which results in physical, emotional or sexual maltreatment or death . Abuse can take many different forms. One type is physical abuse, which obviously involves an infliction of physical harm on the child. Another is sexual abuse, which not only entails physical sexual activity, but also includes non-physical, sexual exploitation. Emotional abuse is another form, which results when someone is verbally threatened and or humiliated. There are also several different levels of neglect. A child can be subject to physical neglect, which means the caretaker fails to provide for the child physically. Educational and emotional neglects can also be inflicted on a child. Educational neglect occurs when a parent fails to provide a child with the opportunity to gain an education. Emotional abuse is when a child doesnt receive the proper amount of affection or nurturing.
It has become a common fact that many serial killers and violent offenders had childhoods that were scarred with child abuse. Children often become depressed as a result of abuse. Boys in particular, show aggressive and sometimes unstable behavior while depressed (Embry). This erratic behavior leads them to act impulsively and begin a life of violence that could quickly turn into a life of crime. A common occurrence in our society is the rising number of violent teenagers. In a study of fourteen juveniles on death row, in several different states, twelve had experienced ruthless physical and sexual abuse (Minerbrook). The chance is 40% greater that abused children, versus non-abused children, will be arrested as juveniles and or in adulthood (Stephens). Violence seems inevitable for an abused child to develop.
However, even as adults, those who have been abused are now subconsciously and maybe even genetically built to produce violence. Without therapy or something of the like, these individuals will be inclined to act violently to situations in their life. In my opinion, those with a history of abuse endure an everyday struggle to overcome their thoughts of brutality. While the majority of these individuals will continue the cycle of violence, there are a few success stories. Some of us overcome the struggles and lead normal and even successful lives. However, the number of people who prolong the sphere of abuse will remain and continue on.