By Shauna L. Smith M.S.W (auth.)
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Extra info for Making Peace With Your Adult Children
Any of the actions listed fit into the ca tegory of abuse if the consequences for the child were severe. " In the case of children, it includes physical, emotional, or sexual mistreatment as weH as neglect. Abuse is a strong word and seems to imply purposeful commission of cruel, unthinkable acts. In my opinion, abuse, like any other harmful action, is committed out of ignorance, helplessness, or a compulsion to repeat patterns. Almost aH people who abuse others have been abused themselves. If you are a person who was abused or was abusive, it is crucial for you to understand this and to deal with these patterns so that you can help stop abuse in the succeeding generations.
THE EFFECTS OF HARMFUL CHILDHOOD EXPERIENCES 41 3. Checking with your children to see if they see things as you do. If one of your children gave you this book, you may be missing some important information and it would be a good idea to ask them to darify the reasons they wanted you to read it. The second possibility is that you missed a lot of what went on in your family, either because it seemed so natural and normal (it was a11 you' d ever known) or because it was too much for you to handle on a conscious level.
You may feel confused if you checked several items for yourself but you do not have any memories of traumatic experiences. You also may feel bewildered if you have checked several items for your children but are not aware of any traumas that they experienced. Sometimes parents do not know about the traumatic events that have happened to their children. As you open up your relationship with your children, they are likely to share more details of their past and you may learn things that you do not know as yet.