In this time of coronavirus and home isolation, there are more children than ever being exposed to people and situations that aren’t good for them physically or emotionally. And while it can be hard for you to care for or protect the children in your life that aren’t your biological kids during quarantine, if you have noticed that something seems to be a bit off with the children you know, there are still things you can do to help keep them safe and get them the help that they may be needing.
To help you see how this can be done, here are three things to do if you suspect someone to be a victim of child abuse.
Look For Common Signs Of Abuse
While not all cases of abuse are going to be the same, there are common signs of abuse that you can and should be on the lookout for with the children in your life.
According to Sadie Ball, a contributor to Parent.com, some signs of abuse include behavioral issues, fear of adults, nightmares, aggression, anxiety, always wearing long pants and shirts, or signs of physical neglect. Although just one or even multiple manifestations of these signs doesn’t necessarily mean that abuse is taking place, all of these and more could be an indication that abuse has been happening or is currently happening in that child’s life.
Try Not To Interrogate The Child
If you suspect that child abuse may genuinely be taking place, it’s a good idea to try to get more information about the situation so you can make a more informed decision on how to proceed. The last thing you want to do is report someone or something as abuse that actually isn’t.
When trying to uncover more about the circumstances in the life of the child, HelpGuide.org advises that you be very careful not to interrogate the child you’re speaking with. Try not to ask them leading questions, as this could make them feel unsure about what you’re talking about. Just allow the child to explain things in their own words and at their own pace.
Always Report What You Learn
As you learn more about the situation and if you feel that abuse is taking place, RAINN.org states that you should always report what you learn. While you might be nervous about potentially making the situation worse and unsetting the life of the child more than it already is, only when the proper people and authorities are aware of the situation can they take steps to help the child and get them into a safe environment.
If you’re concerned that a child you know is in an abuse situation, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you see if abuse is taking place and know what to do in the event that it is.