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Child Abuse

Helping Someone Cope With Abuse

03/24/2005

Question:

my nephew is now 7 years old and we just are now getting to see him for the 1st time. He use to get beat, take drugs and get sexually abused by his mother and her boyfriends. When he first came to our house to live with us he would shakes. He still won't let anyone hug nor kiss him good-night. Why is he still the way he is because we`ve adopted him. He has been with us for almost 1 year now!!!! What can I do to help him????

Answer:

Your concerns regarding your nephew's emotional reactions should not be ignored.  From the limited history that you provide, as well as the reactions that you describe, I would suggest that you seek professional help. 

There are many therapist who work with children who have been the victims of physical and sexual abuse.  Ask for a referral from your nephew's physician or from a local child advocacy center.

For more information:

Go to the Child Abuse health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Robert Shapiro, MD
Professor of Clinical Pediatrics
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati