Each year in the United States several million children experience some extreme traumatic event. Some of these events include natural disasters, death of a loved one, vehicle accidents, physical and/or sexual abuse and witnessing domestic violence. Children are increasingly exposed to violence in society. Many of these children may develop some form of psychological problems that can significantly impair their emotional, academic, and social functioning. Research has noted that many of these children will become fearful of their environment and develop expectations that their future will be unhappy. These children are in need of interventions to help them develop productive modes of coping. Over the years there have been many therapies and interventions researched in treating children with various behavior, emotional and psychological problems. Many children are treated for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder after witnessing traumatic events. It is my hypothesis that there is no one therapy alone, but that a combination of therapies would prove to be successful in helping children who have witnessed domestic violence. Also I believe that age, gender and severity of exposure will have an effect on how successful the intervention will be. Current literature addresses traumatic experiences that children have faced. This paper will explore interventions that have been used to treat children who have witnessed domestic violence, a traumatic experience, and discuss the effectiveness of the interventions.
Review of Literature Gathered research data shows that child exposure to domestic violence deleteriously affects children's social, emotional and cognitive development (Groves,1999). Witnessing domestic violence may lead a young boy to view the abuse as male dominance while also viewing females as weak or submissive. Not all will children need treatment for exposure to domestic violence, but some clinicians have adapted models developed to