More subtle and tricky to identify or even define than child abuse is the more common child neglect. Defined properly as the failure of a parent or guardian to safeguard a child’s emotional and physical health, the term can be broad and infuriatingly vague. Due to its varying degrees of severity, child neglect can be difficult to perceive as a real threat when in reality, it can be a serious and damaging problem in a child’s life. The vast majority of cases reported to social services around the United States are various forms of child neglect, whether they be intentional or unintentional. Without proper intervention, child neglect can seriously undermine a child’s overall physical and emotional well being.
Due to neglect being such a general term, experts generally break child neglect into smaller, more specific kinds of neglect. Physical neglect is a failure to provide the shelter, food, and clothing necessary to live a healthy life. Emotional neglect is failure to provide the emotional support system that so many children depend on to grow healthy mentally. Medical or dental neglect is a failure to provide the necessary medical attention when a child is sick or in need of dental consultation. Educational neglect can be found in families where the parents don’t make certain that their child is attending school regularly. The failure to provide adequate supervision or the exposure of children to unsafe environments is another type of child neglect.
Neglect is too easily dismissed as differences between how households run and their rules. It is a slippery slope between simply disagreeing how a family runs their affairs and being certain that child neglect is taking place. Unfortunately, that can also leave the child in question in danger, negatively impacting their chances at a successful education, a safe upbringing, and an emotionally stable future. Without the necessities of life provided for a child, their very life can often be at risk, even if the parent or guardian is not intending to put them in danger.
Child neglect is defined as the failure of a parent or guardian of a child to safeguard that child’s emotional and physical health as well as their general well-being. As a complicated and troubling issue, child neglect is not something to be taken lightly. The trained therapists and knowledgeable experts can help you sort through the emotional ramifications of dealing with child neglect as well as helping you become more educated about the dangers and warning signs. With this knowledge, GoMentor.com hopes to help you and your family know how best to deal with any situation that may arise.