7 Types of Childhood Abuse

Hey Optimist Minds!

According to the World Health Organisation, nearly 3 in 4 children, or 300 million children, regularly suffer from some kind of child abuse. Even in developed nations like the USA, the statistics for the prevalence of childhood abuse paint a grim picture.

The worst part about child abuse is that even after you relocate the kids to a safer location, the impact lasts for years, even decades. It shapes the personality they develop as adults by influencing their levels of self-esteem and self-worth. 

Typically, it is the child’s parents causing harm but it can also be other guardians or relatives living with them. In this video, we’re going to describe various types of such abuse to spread awareness on the matter.

We want our viewers to use this information only for educational purposes. However, if you or someone you know has experienced anything like it, we recommend consulting a licensed mental health professional. It could show you how to undo the damage.

Here are seven types of childhood abuse.


Physical abuse.

Probably the most commonly recognised form of abuse is violence. Parents may attack their children physically as a means to punish, show authority, or for no good reason at all.

In some cultures, it might be acceptable for a parent to raise their hand when disciplining their child. Nevertheless, violence is traumatic, especially when coming from your primary caregivers. It can lead to several behavioural issues and psychopathology.


Sexual abuse.

Though incest is socially unacceptable behaviour in most cultures, it’s still highly prevalent across the globe. Countless children are sexually molested by their parents, siblings, or other relatives.

Not only is this heinous crime horrifying to endure, but the trauma can also cause severe physical and emotional problems throughout the survivor’s life.

It takes years of therapy to heal from such an atrocity.


Emotional abuse.

Emotional abuse includes yelling, insulting, or swearing. It can also look like constant rejection, where the parent almost always dismisses the child’s thoughts, ideas and opinions. 

A more malignant form of emotional abuse is gaslighting. It involves making you doubt your own feelings and thoughts, and even your sanity, by manipulating the truth.

Survivors of emotional child abuse grow up to have intense self-doubt, trouble with boundaries and are susceptible to mental illnesses.


Parental alienation.

In this kind of child abuse, one parent tries to sabotage the bond the child has with the other parent. The abusive parent might prevent interaction between the two or purposely try to bias the child. 

For instance, they might persistently lie about the other parent and make them look like a villain. It’s pretty common to see parental alienation in cases of divorce or separation. 



Some parents exploit their children as a source of income. If their child has a commercial talent, they take on the responsibility of being the manager. 

Sadly, in this role, they focus more on earning money or fame and less on the child’s happiness. As a result, the parent pushes too hard, tries to control the child, and robs them of their childhood.



Another kind of abuse more easily noticed and reported is the absence of the parent from the child’s life. Neglectful parents aren’t there for their children in times of need. 

Their kids are forced to look out for themselves and constantly feel scared about their safety. They might not be able to perform well academically because of the lack of support. Unsupervised, these children often fall into the wrong company and dangerous situations.


Narcissistic Abuse.

A more specific type of emotional abuse is done by parents with narcissistic tendencies. Narcissists are individuals who are arrogant, self-absorbed, manipulative, antagonistic, and unempathetic. They make terrible parents.

Narcissistic abuse involves making the child question their own abilities and judgement. Usually, it is so well disguised that others hear or see the same behaviours and fail to recognise them as abuse.

Children who go through this feel confused, upset, or even guilty for things they didn’t do.

Did any of these descriptions remind you of your parents? Do you think you survived childhood abuse? Let us know in the comments if you found this video helpful. 

A link for further reading and the studies & references used in the making of this video are mentioned in the description below.

Thanks for visiting optimist minds, take care. Until next time.