Psychology Essay Example: Effect of Children Growing with Verbal Abuse

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Day by day, domestic violence in the form of assault, verbal abuse, insults, threats, and intimidation is spreading roots through the social systems and contemporary society. There are many incidents involving conflicts between two intimate people around their young ones which is characterized by forms of verbal abuse which are directed towards causing emotional harm as an act of revenge for wrongdoing. Since verbal abuse entails insults, shouts, derogatory language, intimidation, threats, demeaning among other forms of rude words, it may not be a right environment for the growth of a child. Many children will be hurt at times and with time, they will adapt to the form of abuse and will tend to assimilate such kind of insults and abuse to people. Psychiatric Times found out in its study on effects of verbal abuse that, verbal abuse engulfs ones mind and the scars can stay for a very long time even after passing through the healing process (Arehart-Treichel 28). Therefore, this rhetoric analysis paper seeks to analyze two articles regarding the effects of verbal abuse on children and their future emotions and behavior through a summary of the articles and a thorough analysis involving comparison and contrast of ideas to come up with a proper idea of the two sets of research.

Arehart-Treichel (28) outlined that as much as adults take abuse as a way of punishing their spouses, little do they know that the effect of abuse absorbed a child is unmeasurable since the childs brain is at its best time of acquiring the knowledge from social interactions of their associates and parents as role models. Children being naturally dependent on their parents face the most significant reprimanding challenge due to the emotional connectedness that they have with both of their parents. In the same Psychiatric Times Journal, Arhart-Treichel outlines that are the most vulnerable and powerless members of a family and they receive the effect of abuse like a massive blow on from a heavyweight boxer.

Assault of any kind affects an individuals mental, physical and psychological well-being. Also, people who grow up in abusive families end up carrying on a self-critical life, and the individuals become prone to anxiety and depression (Riggs, Shelley and Kaminski 88). Psychiatric Times Journal offers an additional information that verbally abusive families result to individuals who show 1.6 times higher prevalence of anxiety and depression than those in friendly families. Also, the article outlines that an abusive relationship makes a child to question her safety in the hands of her parents and will end up developing a repulsive behavior in which he or she acts in a manner suggesting that they are in an imbalanced power state.

Moreover, the Psychiatric Times Journal outlined that a child will later develop passive patterns of behavior hence they reproduce the same abusive traits that are absorbed from their parents during their childhood. As much as a child suffers on behalf of the abused in a family, they later develop an attitude against the abused and start to believe the insults on the abused to be a real picture of them. For instance, if there is a recurrent insult stupid, then the child will grow up knowing that the parent who is often called stupid in a relationship is indeed useless.

On the other hand, as much as Psychiatric Times state that a child will develop offensive and defensive behavior that is accompanied by abuses on people, Riggs et al. (87) outlines that most verbally abused children maintain the aspect of being powerless after a series of abusive family relationship. Inability to solve the differences and end up submitting to their subjects in the manner that they conform to any bullying having an inferiority complex. This kind of children, therefore, end up extending the aspect of being weak, vulnerable to abuse and maintain the notion that they are weak thus absorb any form of abuse. On the other hand, Riggs, Shelley, and Kaminski (94) outline that a child who suffers and lives in a family that involved in a series of verbal abuse tend show delayed physical, academic, emotional and social developments than those living in families that do not embrace any form of verbal abuse.

Riggs et al. (101) research also found out that some of the children who grow up in verbally abusive family retaliate in the teenage and adult life by developing self-destructive character, they abuse their fellow without showing remorsefulness and end up indulging in alcohol and drug abuse. Additionally, Riggs et al.s (76) came up with the idea that most women drug abusers were reported to have grown up in abusive families regarding sexual, physical and verbal abuse. Notwithstanding the fact that many drugs abusers are usually people who suffer abuse in their adulthood, a majority of those who indulge in substance abuse in their teenage life are typically attached to abusive families. Also, Riggs et al. (76) point out that indulgence in drug and substance abuse by the teens in abusive families is usually purposed for helping the teens to forget the insults awaiting them in their respective families, but the habit ends up becoming their tradition and later a bad habit.

Comparison and contrast on Parents' Verbal Abuse Leave Long-Term Legacy and Childhood emotional abuse, adult attachment, and depression.

Since children learn and acquire knowledge from the associations and words used on them: A verbal abuse on a child can making the child come up with self-assumptions about themselves in line to whatever abuse upon them. For instance, a child who is denied the chance to attend their schoolmate's party, and who has low grades in academics can end up making assumptions that they are indeed stupid and that their stupidity denies them a chance to attend their fellow's party since they do not fit the class of intelligent people. Parents abuses on a child can end up making the child to develop a feeling of isolation, and at times they might establish post-traumatic disorder or an antisocial personality disorder.

In analyzing Arehart-Treichels (28) idea a child's experiences in an abusive family who end up developing unsafe feelings, thinking of revenge conforms with Riggs et al.s (101) idea that the abusive relationships make the child lose the value of aspects of concern for others. They, therefore, end up becoming destructive, abusive and commit many crimes against their fellows. This kind of children depicts such an awful character after realizing that even the people who are so close to them (parents) did not care for his or her emotion hence they do not see the essence of being kind to anyone. Since a repeated abuse may end up becoming generational since a learned behavior during childhood sticks in the mind of a child like learning culture hence may end up becoming an episodic or generational behavior. There, psychiatric Times journals concepts and Riggs et al.s (n.p) findings outline that recurring verbal abuse to from one generation to another is the worst and major effect of verbal abuse that involve children.

The aspect that recurrent or episodic verbal abuse makes an individual grow up without the knowledge of how to carry themselves with others was well outlined by Riggs et al. (76) than Arehart-Treichel (n.p). For instance, Riggs et al. (76) described that individuals who grow up in abusive families are characterized by shameless public loud verbal abuses, often scream and always threat their fellows about assaulting them physically. Mental torture that an individual pass through in their childhood life all through adulthood makes them behave in the same manner as a repetitive adopted behavior.

An analysis of adults in relationships who hurt their spouses most because of abuse is usually related to the families that have always carried from an abusive life. This kind of individual, however, was not outlined by Riggs et al. (n.p) but was shallowly communicated by Arehart-Treichel (28). On expounding on the matter, most abusive people will always carry a gift to cool their soulmate for a repeated abuse that they were poor upon them. It was not indicated in Riggs et al. (n.p) article that verbal abuse on a marriage partner is like indirect abuse to the child since at the tender age a child protection is her mother hence an abuse of their mother will haunt the child longer than an abuse on their dad. A recurrent mistreatment among parents results in psychological and emotional scars which end up lasting for a lifetime.


An analysis of the two sets of research about effects of verbal abuse on children leads us to the conclusion that repeated episodes of violence make a child to question their helplessness and tend to develop an inferiority complex because of realizing that verbal assault among their parents is beyond their control. A realization of the levels and extent of helplessness make the child absorb the insult as if it is a direct yielding to him or her. Shouting threats and intimidation makes the child, therefore, to feel that all his close associates including his friends are superior to him and that he ought to submit to their rule. The feelings that one is not in the rank of his or her fellows makes them start avoiding people, and in return, they tend to be antisocial and abusive. The low self-confidence as a result of episodic verbal abuse causes an individual to develop low self-esteem which in turn will lead to depression and frustrations. Depression and failures make the child or victim in abusive engagement to overreact and avoid eating which explains the reason why children in abusive families show slow physical growth. Lastly, verbal child abuse ends up being emotional child abuse in cases where a violation of the child touches his weakness. For instance, a mistreatment about being silly may cause psychological problems to the child in case the child reflects on his or her poor academic performance.


Works Cited

Arehart-Treichel, Joan. "Parents' Verbal Abuse Leaves Long-Term Legacy." Psychiatric News 41.13 (2006): 28. Web. 1 Oct. 2011.

Riggs, Shelley A., and Patricia Kaminski. "Childhood emotional abuse, adult attachment, and depression as predictors of relational adjustment and psychological aggression." Journal of aggression, maltreatment & trauma 19.1 (2010): 75-104. Retrieved from


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