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The Signs:

Physical Abuse:

  • Bruising, welts or burns that cannot be sufficiently explained; particularly bruises on the face, lips, and mouth of infants or on several surface planes at the same time;

  • Withdrawn, fearful or extreme behavior;

  • Clusters of bruises, welts or burns, indicating repeated contact with a hand or instrument;

  • Burns that are insufficiently explained; for example, cigarette burns

  • Injuries on children where children don't usually get injured (e.g., the torso, back neck buttocks, or thighs).

  • Children that are especially aggressive or who display behavior that seems excessively mature or caretaking for someone their age may be living in violent homes
Sexual Abuse:

Immediate signs
  • Difficulty walking or sitting

  • Pain or itching in the genital area

  • Stained or bloody underclothing

  • Frequent complaints of stomachaches or headaches

  • Venereal or sexually transmitted disease

  • Bruises or bleeding in external genitalia

  • Feeling threatened by physical contact

  • Inappropriate sex play or premature understanding of sex

  • Frequent urinary or yeast infections
Long term signs
  • Biological changes

  • Repetition of sexualized behaviors/language

  • Decreased IQ and academic performance

  • Relational conflicts and vocational difficulties
Emotional Abuse:
  • Speech disorders

  • Inability to play as most children do

  • Sleeping problems

  • Anti-social behavior or behavioral extremes

  • Delays in emotional and intellectual growth
  • Lack of medical or dental care

  • Chronically dirty or unbathed

  • Lack of adequate school attendance

  • Lack of parental supervision

  • Lack of proper nutrition

  • Lack of adequate housing

  • Self-destructive feelings or behavior
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