Today there is much written about children being abused, there are many programs and institutions that have been started to support those abused, educate the abusers and help everyone be aware of it. However, here we are talking about parents who live with their children who tend to be abusive to them. This is a shameful problem that nobody talks about and neither is anything much done about it. It is time to start the chain of kindness so that it will encircle the world and make things better all around.
The first step is spot the sign of parents being abused: These could manifest themselves in many forms like harm in the physical sense or depression or to losing jobs or even breakdown of the family. Normally such abuse happens and is done by children or a child in his or her teens. It could take on the form of physical violence or some form of threats.
Intimidating: This could be in the form of refusing to do normal things around the home or making family friends leave or for that matter staying away from any family activity.
There could be bullying either in person or by any other means, stealing and damaging property, harm or potential harm to children and pets in the home, blackmailing emotional or some form of substance abuse or deriding the parent or parents in front of everyone.
In many cases, parents may view these kinds of behavior as normal behavior of a teenager but one needs to separate such things from parental abuse and get it treated. If left untreated, this could result in long lasting harm to the whole family. In some cases the parents start feeling like failures or lose the bond with their children.
In some instances, the child may be enjoying the chance to abuse the parent as the emotions of a person during their teens is completely different from that of a logical and understanding adult.
What is more, today as kids are more aware of their rights, they tend to go to extremes of this to bully their parents as they feel that the parent cannot punish them.
There is no social distinction when it comes to such abuse as it happens in single parent families as much as it does in two parent families. In many cases it has been observed that the mother bares the brunt of the abuse, though fathers are affected too.
What Makes A Teen Abusive To Their Parents?
Though it is normally believed that parental abuse is the result of a bad or neglected or abusive childhood but it is known to happen in cases where the child has had a normal upbringing. It could be the result of lack of a strict moral code being inculcated into children or due to there being no boundaries in terms of what children are exposed to, nowadays.
What Can Be Done?
The first step is to stop being a passive participant and being silent when it comes to such behavior.
Then acknowledge that you are not to blame for it and reach out for some help either from your doctor or your family and friends.
Talk to the child about his or her behavior while being cool and calm and tell them that it is not acceptable at all. Get them to talk about it and if possible have them participate in counseling to get to the roots of this.
Communicate to the child that this behavior will not be tolerated and that the next time this happens, you will seek interference from law if required. Be calm and make them understand that you mean business.
It is best not to resort to violence or physical punishment yourself as this will only make things worse for you.
Keep a record of events and seek outside help or even form a support group who will help you and your family get through this situation.
While the whole situation may be untenable and makes you feel guilty and depressed, it is time to speak out and seek help. The first thing you need to do is get rid of the immense guilt you may be feeling at some of the things that you may not have done perfectly as a parent. We are all humans and will make a mistake one day or the other but this does not mean that you let this affect the way you guide your child in their growth years.
When there is something wrong in the way your child is behaving, it is your duty as a responsible parent to take the right steps:
Talk about it with teachers, friends, doctors and even social workers
Abuse even from a child to the parent is as bad as the other way around
Your silence is only going to make things worse and there is no shame in sharing
Being a victim is as bad as being the person who abuses someone.
Acceptance and education is the right step forward.