Few incidents are more horrifying than learning that your children have been subjected to child abuse at the hands of someone you trusted. However, this happens far more often than you might think. More often than not, the other parent of your child is the person found to be their abuser.
As difficult as this might be to grasp, you have to do what’s in your child’s best interest, even if that means going to Court and getting or modifying a custody order between you and their other parent. Below, we examine the impact that child abuse can have on your child’s life and how you can protect them moving forward.
Effects of Child Abuse
If a child is being abused, it can impact their life in a devastating way. Not only do children who have survived abuse suffer from depression, anxiety, and fear, but they have also reported feelings of self-harm, developed eating disorders, have nightmares or insomnia, experience flashbacks and post-traumatic stress disorder, and even develop suicidal thoughts.
It is of utmost importance that you remove your child from the situation if you believe their other parent has been abusing them. If you believe they are in immediate danger when visiting with their other parent, you should contact your local police department so that you can keep them at home until the matter is resolved and have a paper trail of evidence that can help support your case when you bring their other parent to court.
Obtaining or Modifying a Child Custody Order
Going to court is the only way to keep your child safe from their abuser by law. If you don’t already have a child custody order in effect, you should work with your attorney to obtain one.
Abuse should never be taken lightly, and you should plan on presenting any medical documentation, police reports, photographs, videos and even the child’s own testimony in court. The Judge will review the evidence provided to determine what is in the best interest of the child.
If you have an existing child custody order, you’ll need to file a petition to modify child custody before you can withhold your child from visits with their other parent by law. However, by reporting your concerns to the local police, you may be able to keep your child safe until you can get the modification you need to put a stop to the abuse your child has endured.
A Qualified Family Law Attorney Can Help You
When you need to do whatever it takes to protect your child from further abuse but you aren’t sure how to go about getting a court order against their abuser, an attorney to help defend against child abuse can help. Your family law attorney will be experienced in these types of cases and will work to ensure that your child is never subjected to abuse again.