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Child Abuse

Identifying Child Abuse

08/15/2006

Question:

There`s a long list of thing that worry me about some children I know. When the little girl (3 y/o) and boy (5 y/o) visit with their father, the little girl clings to him, acts like a baby (puts her fingers in her mouth, pants while making cooing sounds, doesn`t articulate when she`s in that mode) she won`t sit still, not even long enough to eat, she gets up and runs everywhere, she tried to put a lite-brite peg (little toy piece) into another childs buttocks, bites herself and blames others. Concerns me, and the little boy, he`s manipulative, he hurts other children and preps the other children to pass the blame off on other kids when asked what happened, he when given any time alone with other children has asked them to pull down their pants and "poop" cause he wants to see. They both whine and cry when it`s time to go back to their mommy`s house, they almost have to literally be drug out, either that or their father requests another day/night with them. Should I be concerned that they might be being abused?

Answer:

Although the behaviors that you are describing sound very undesirable and out of control, they are not specific for child abuse.

 

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