Models of Abuse
For the purpose of this assignment, the intention is to describe the four theoretical models of child abuse. The 4 models that I will be looking at are; the medical model of abuse, sociological model of abuse, psychological model of abuse and the feminist model of abuse. I will also be looking at the aspects of the theories that are similar or different. To conclude I also intend to evaluate the four theoretical models of abuse by identifying the advantages and disadvantages. The Medical Model of abuse sees the abuse as an illness or a disease needing a cure. Kempe and Kempe were the inspiration for this theory when they described it as battered child syndrome. The battered child syndrome is a disease in which children are physically abused. The theory of Kempe and Kempe was correlated by Bowlby’s findings about the attachment theory. “Bowlby believed that the earliest bonds formed by children with their caregivers have a tremendous impact that continues throughout life.” (www.psychology.about.com, 01.03.2011). This quote tells us that Bowlby believed that children, who failed to form a bond with their mother in the first three years of their life, would have problems in later life bonding with people and trusting people. Therefore this tells us that it is very important that you comfort and reassure the child when they feel frightened or threatened. This will therefore prevent the child from abusing other children and young people. Babies communicate through crying which could indicate hunger, pain, tiredness and for attention. It is very important that you respond to these needs as this will help your child to get attached to you. The advantage of the medical model is that parents who have abused their children can get treatment to help with bonding with their child. This is very important as Bowlby believed that attachment is necessary in the first three years of life. If the child is attached to their caregiver they are less likely to abuse. However the disadvantage of this model is that if the child has already been abused it will be a learned behaviour. Therefore the child will abuse other children as they will believe that it is ok to abuse. Another disadvantage is that when the child is removed to places of safety it will cause separation anxiety. Therefore the child is more likely to abuse other people due to this reason. Sociological model of abuse is when a child is abused due to the abusers social environment for example; job loss, low income, poor housing, poor health and many more. Parents with a low income often face a lot of stress therefore are likely to abuse their children. Some parents cannot cope with stress therefore get frustrated with their children. If parents have a high income they will be more confident and have higher self-esteem. So as a result there will be less chances of abuse. However if they have a low income they will be stressed out and get frustrated with their children and abuse them. If parents have grown up in an environment that considers abuse as a ‘norm’ are more likely to abuse their children. “Child abuse is considered a sociological occurrence because it is not an innate behavioural pattern for human beings to follow. It, for the most part, is a learned behaviour.” (Havelin, K. (2000) Child Abuse “Why do my parents hit me?” Pg15). This tells us that parents who have been abused as children are more likely to abuse their own children. So therefore this will be discussed as the cycle of abuse. I strongly believe that this pattern is wrong as people who have been abused will often feel that, abusing their own children is wrong because of how it made them feel. I don’t think anyone will want their children to go through what they have been through. Sociological theories saw abusers as normal people with extreme circumstances like financial stress, which compelled them to abuse their children and young people. The advantage of a sociological model of abuse is...
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