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Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Services ( MCYS, 2005 ) states that, “ Child maltreatment is defined as any act of skip or committee by a parent or defender which would jeopardize or impair the kid ‘s physical or emotional wellbeing, or that is judged by a mixture of community values and professionals to in inappropriate. ”

Different types of maltreatment

MCYS ( 2005 ) recognised four different types of maltreatment, viz. physical maltreatment, sexual maltreatment, emotional maltreatment every bit good as disregard. In add-on, disregard can be broken down into 4 sections ; physical, medical, instruction and emotional ( Child Welfare Information Gateway, 2006 )

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Therefore, what really comprises in each of the different types of maltreatment?

Physical Maltreatment

In conformity to Child Welfare Information Gateway ( 2005 ) , physical maltreatment is physical hurt caused by punching, whipping, kicking, knifing, firing or utilizing a foreign object to hit the other party. The badness of hurt may change from minor contusions to breaks or decease. Furthermore, physical maltreatment does non take into consideration if culprits by chance or deliberately harm the kid.

Sexual Maltreatment

Sexual maltreatment is known as inappropriate activities performed by the culprits. The Federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act ( CAPTA ) further defined sexual maltreatment as “ the employment, usage, persuasion, incentive, temptation, or coercion of any kid to prosecute in, or help any other individual to prosecute in, any sexually expressed behavior or simulation of such behavior for the intent of bring forthing a ocular word picture of such behavior ; or the colza, and in instances or caretaking or inter-familial relationships, statutory colza, molestation, harlotry, or other signifier of sexual development of kids, or incest with kids. ” ( Child Welfare Information Gateway, 2006 )

Emotional Maltreatment

Child Welfare Information Gateway ( 2006 ) provinces, kid can be emotional abused if culprits conduct behaviors that affects kid ‘s emotional development or sense of dignity. However, MCYS ( 2005 ) added, emotional maltreatment non merely affects kid ‘s emotionally development, it besides weakens kid ‘s societal and intellectually development. Additionally, such maltreatment exists with grownup ‘s continual ill will, disregarding, faulting, menaces, favoritism or blazing rejection of the kid ( MCYS, 2005 ) .

Furthermore, based on research, both beginnings agreed that other types of maltreatment are besides present if emotional maltreatment is being identified.


In relation to Chan, Chow & A ; Elliot ( 2000 ) , disregard was redefined as either skip or committee of any act that impairs the kid ‘s physical, psychological, rational or societal development.

As mentioned above, disregard can be categorised into 4 different sections. First, physical disregard may be the inability of supplying nutrient and shelter every bit good as the deficiency of supervising ( Child Welfare Information Gateway, 2006 ) . Second, grownup may neglect in the proviso of indispensable medical attention or mental wellness intervention which is known as medical disregard ( Child Welfare Information Gateway, 2006 ) . Following, grownups may perpetrate to education neglect if they are non capable of giving kid an instruction every bit good as the deficiency of attending to particular instruction demands ( Child Welfare Information Gateway, 2006 ) . Last but non least, if grownups do non go to to child ‘s emotional demands, failure to give kid equal love and attention and leting kid to hold easy entree to alcohol and drugs, grownups are at high hazard in put to deathing emotional disregard ( Child Welfare Information Gateway, 2006 ) .

However, it is of import for farther probes to be done if any of the disregard is present. There might be other lending factors such as poorness or different civilization patterns that might come up parents are being negligent.

Why is Child Abuse a subject of involvement

As an advocate, it is of import to cognize that kids are safe, being respected and are treated suitably. With the raising Numberss of instances of kid maltreatment in Singapore, it shows that any kids may be at hazard of being a victim.

Harmonizing to the statistics on kid maltreatment probes from Year 2009 to Year 2010 ( MCYS, 2011 ) , apart from physical disregard, the remainder of the types of maltreatment instances had increased. The Numberss shown were the instances with grounds of instances. For illustration, the figure of physical maltreatment instances had a leap from 82 to 133, which is about 38 % . As for sexual maltreatment, it raised from 28 to 46 Numberss of instances, which is tantamount to 39 % . Emotional maltreatment instances had increased by 2, summing up to 6 instances in Year 2010. Although there was a bead of 4 instances for physical disregard, it may demo that people may be more cognizant of such incorrect behaviors. However, these Numberss stated above merely showed the reported instances with grounds. What about the other instances that had been reported but unequal grounds were gathered?

In add-on, kids from the United States ( U.S ) were victims of maltreatment and disregard every bit good. Statisticss for Year 2006 shows that 54 % are victims of child ill-treatment of age up to 7 old ages. To add on, statistics reported an estimated figure of 1,530 kids died due to mistreat or pretermit. Out of 1,530 kids, 78 % were kids under the age of 4 ( Shaw & A ; Goode, 2006 ) . This shows that kids of the preschool old ages are really vulnerable to mistreat.

Maine State Dept. of Behavioral and Developmental Services ( 2001 ) mentioned that childhood maltreatment may take to adult experience of shame, repeated flashbacks and incubuss may be traumatic for the victim. In add-on, it may do victim to be badly dying over affairs, depression every bit good as developing feelings of humiliation and unworthiness.

Therefore, it is besides of import to educate parents about the raising Numberss of kid maltreatment instances. In add-on, to make consciousness that no 1 should strip a kid to hold a healthy childhood experience.

Hence, in this present paper, it will further lucubrate on who may be the victims of kid maltreatment and its impact on kids, how child maltreatment affected parents and what happened to subsisters of kid maltreatment as they grow up.

Victims of kid maltreatment and its impact

Harmonizing Chan, Chow & A ; Elliot ( 2000 ) , grounds from research stated that striplings are besides at high hazard on physical ill-treatment. On top of that, more normally reported instances of physical kid maltreatment instances involve the striplings as good.

Therefore, what makes a certain kid be at a higher hazard of kid maltreatment? Statisticss systematically showed that households that are socially and economically disadvantaged have more studies on physical maltreatment. Based on the research, households that falls under the low income household or one-year income are below poorness degree, it is more likely for the kid to have more fatal or serious hurts ( Chan, Chow & A ; Elliot, 2000 ) .

Bing financially unstable may do a kid to be a victim of kid maltreatment, nevertheless this is non the chief ground to put such kid at hazard. Pre-matured babies, intellectually handicapped and any kid who are developmentally disabled can be vulnerable to being abused excessively ( Chan, Chow & A ; Elliot, 2000 ) . The grounds behind it are such kid is viewed as a beginning of emphasis and load to the household and household might happen it hard to manage.

For case, a kid was being physically abused, how did the experience affects the kid negatively? In conformity to Chan, Chow & A ; Elliot ( 2000 ) , it may do damage in kid ‘s behavior, varied badness of physical hurts on kid, child faces troubles at school and kid may hold hapless interpersonal accomplishments.

However, one of the restrictions of this survey is that research was carried out long ago and consequences are still limited and scarce in Singapore. Next, this survey did non precisely mention the precise beginning where they gathered the statistics or how did they travel about assemblage and roll uping the consequences. Last, this survey focuses on two age groups which are the babies and yearlings and the striplings. What about kids from the older age group? How high is the hazard for older kids refering to child maltreatment?

Impact on parents

The term “ impact on parents ” refers to parents who were one time victims of maltreatment or parents who had kid who was being abused. Hence, how did one time exploited parents got over the bad experience and started a new household? In add-on, how did parents experience when their kid was being abused by others?

Bing a parent, subsister of kid maltreatment, and yet holding a kid who was assaulted, it may be really straitening particularly for parents who unwrap their childhood maltreatment experience for the first clip ( Grant, 2006 ) . Furthermore, these parents may get down to develop a sense of guilt as they were non incapable to protect their kid despite sing it. Parents may besides hold flashbacks of those painful memories after unwraping the maltreatment ( Grant, 2006 ) .

In add-on, Grant ( 2006 ) mentioned that parents who had kid being abused may get down to confront many challenges. Having a kid being abused, it may be difficult for certain parents to accept the fact. Certain parents may be excessively overwhelmed and can be emotionally unstable. Parents may be in the province of confusion which in bend may hinder their ability to back up and supply aid for their kid and household throughout the probe procedure ( Grant, 2006 ) .

Taking for illustration if parents entrust their kid with a caretaker and it turn out to be the caretaker who is the culprit, parents may be devastated and difficult to believe. In add-on, parents may be in great daze and developed a sense of treachery. Therefore, after meeting such incident, how easy or possible can the parent cooperate and trust other unknown professionals? ( Grant, 2006 ) Additionally, parents may besides set the incrimination on themselves for leting their kid to be abused. For case, they may oppugn themselves, “ Why had non I ( parents ) see this state of affairs? “ , “ Why did non I protect my kid? ” or ‘What type of a parent am I? ” ( Grant, 2006 )

Upon accepting world, it can be truly difficult on parents to manage the approaching jobs faced at place if they have more than one kid. Parents may understand that they had to pass more clip with the victim, seeking to assist the kid to acquire over the bad brush. On the other manus, parents have to guarantee that they are capable to keep a healthy relationship with other kids at place. If the state of affairs is non handled suitably, other kids may get down to develop a sense of green-eyed monster and bitterness towards the exploited sibling every bit good as the parent ( Grant, 2006 ) .

However, one of the restrictions in this survey is that there was non any statistics given. Following, this survey did non advert the age of the parents. Older parents may be able to manage the state of affairs better than younger parents. Last, this survey did non give elaborate information on the parent ‘s household background and the relationship within the household. With a supportive household, parents every bit good as kid may be able to retrieve faster from the bad brush.

Survivors of kid maltreatment when they grow up

As researched by Maine State Dept. of Behavioral and Developmental Services ( 2001 ) , some abused kids may see womb-to-tomb emotional injury as they grow up. For case, some abused kids may see serious mental wellness jobs. Research estimated that abused kids are 2 to 3 times more likely to develop a serious mental unwellness. In add-on, up to 70 % of adult females who were treated in psychiatric scene have histories of childhood maltreatment ( Maine State Dept. of Behavioral and Developmental Services, 2001 ) .

On top of that, some may endure womb-to-tomb physical injury due to childhood maltreatment. Ranging from 3 % to 6 % , research shows that abused kids may develop a lasting disablement ( Maine State Dept. of Behavioral and Developmental Services, 2001 ) . Brain harm is an illustration of lasting disablement and 20 % to 50 % of abused kids suffered from encephalon harm but of different badness. It is farther hypothesized that abused kids are of higher hazard of acquiring bosom disease, malignant neoplastic disease or even other chronic medical conditions ( Maine State Dept. of Behavioral and Developmental Services, 2001 ) . However, there is non concrete grounds to turn out this hypothesis.

Another negative impact on abused kids is that they cause self inflict injury. Some abused kids may acquire into a depression and others may take to try self-destructions ( Maine State Dept. of Behavioral and Developmental Services, 2001 ) . Some abused kids may even mistreat the usage of drugs, intoxicant or nicotine in order to understate or conceal their hurting. It was besides reported by Maine State Dept. of Behavioral and Developmental Services ( 2001 ) that sexually abused kids may be more exposed to further sexual maltreatment or to contract sexually-transmitted disease ( STD ) .

However, one restriction of this survey is that the statistics are non up to day of the month. Therefore, consequences given in this survey may non be accurate plenty. Findingss may change if research is done based on recent old ages.

Apart from the cheerless impacts that happened on subsisters of childhood maltreatment, some subsisters chose to seek aid from professionals such as societal workers, counselors or healers.

This research was done by questionnaires and interviews were conducted based on respondent ‘s willingness. Out of 500 questionnaires mailed out, there were 384 completed questionnaires. Fifty interviews were besides conducted to further supplement the information.

Out of the 15 subjects that were emerges based on how helpful the services were, seven common subjects were mentioned in the survey. Respondents felt that professional assistants were patient and they listened. In add-on, professional assistants seem to be empathic ( Palmer, Brown, Rae-Grant & A ; Loughlin, 2001 ) . Following, respondents felt that professional assistants were able to assist them cover with their raging feelings and they no longer have to avoid those feelings. To add on, holding nonjudgmental and understanding professional assistants benefitted subsisters as they were promoting excessively. Following, subsisters felt empowered as the professional assistants believed in them. Professional assistants were besides able to supply connexions for the subsisters with other subsisters, allowing them know that they are non entirely. On top of that, professional assistants helped subsisters to construct their self-esteem and develop a value of self worth. Last, professional assistants were able to formalize subsister ‘s experience giving subsisters confidence ( Palmer, Brown, Rae-Grant & A ; Loughlin, 2001 ) .

However, one of the restrictions of the survey is to generalize subsister ‘s experience across different types of maltreatment. In add-on, the survey merely produced one side of the information. Findingss may be different if these constituents are farther addressed.


To reason, it is of import to make the consciousness to parents about the raising Numberss of kid maltreatment instances in Singapore. By making so, parents may be more cognizant of their ain actions and non perpetrate to any signifier of maltreatment be it by chance or deliberately. In add-on, parents are encouraged to develop an early, secure and consistent relationship with the kids ( Shaw & A ; Goode, 2008 ) . On top of that, harmonizing to Shaw & A ; Goode ( 2008 ) , parents need to supply the same degree of attending to child ‘s emotional and societal demands, non merely their cognitive accomplishments.

For future research, it would be good to research more on how one can foster aid victims and subsisters who are truly immune to acquire over the bad experience. In add-on, another research can be done to assist kids to work on their societal and emotional accomplishments after the bad brush.

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