Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Child Abuse

In my contacts with parents and children I have become more and more convinced that taking sides with an abused child against its parents is absolutely counterproductive. Social workers are well aware of how strong the loyalty of a child is towards its father and mother, and they see it as a set back. They feel the need to separate child and abusive parent.
I believe, however, that hardly ever do parents maltreat a child on purpose; that it is done against their will, in an act of despair. Parents love their children, however much social services seem to believe the opposite.
Abusing parents need sympathy and help, rather than punishment and censure. They need recognition in their struggle with raising children. It is in the interest of the child that a parent can openly talk about the difficulties she encounters, so she can learn new ways to deal with her children.
I strongly believe that in many cases abuse can be stopped if society took a more lenient, open stand on it. Forcing abusive parents to hide their shame is not in the interest of their children.
One cannot protect children by antagonizing their parents.

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