Protection Against Child Abuse in Houston
Child abuse can ruin a child's life if it is not addressed and stopped. Abused children may develop a range of anti-social and self-destructive behaviors and thoughts, and may be too withdrawn to make good relationships later on in life. Some become runaways and turn to drugs and prostitution, while others find a home in gangs. Abuse can be physical, emotional or sexual. If this is happening in your home, you have a moral and legal duty to act, and a lawyer can guide you towards the right course of action for your situation.
Forms of Child Abuse
Physical abuse can involve hitting, slapping, confining or denial of food. While reasonable discipline is lawful, there is a point where parental conduct becomes harmful to the child. Emotional abuse involves degrading statements, continual criticism, angry outbursts, hitting things and threats to harm the child or pets. This can distort the child's thoughts and make it exceedingly difficult for the child to have real relationships throughout the rest of their life.
Sexual abuse can occur over time. It can start as fondling and later turn to sexual intercourse, and can be committed against either sex. This can be hard to perceive. The child often feels responsible and has been warned not to talk about it. The child may feel dependent on the love of the abuser and fear the breakup of the family if he or she talks.
It is vital for the other parent to be watchful and on the alert for signs. The child may talk about the abuse only indirectly, and it may take maintaining excellent communication avoiding invalidation and evaluation for the child to open up and talk about it. It is important not to discount what the child says, but to do something about it. Who else is going to help your child if you as their parent refuse to act?
Helping Victims of Child Abuse
Chernoff Law is a family law firm dedicated to assisting the victims of child abuse, spousal abuse and all forms of
domestic violence. We know how to help, and we can help you take advantage of the legal tools that are available, including protective orders, restraining orders, and criminal referral to the District Attorney's Office. It is the parent's duty to act. It is our job to show the way.