Essay Sample on Domestic Violence, Binge Drinking and Sexual Abuse in Family with Children

Published: 2023-05-01
Essay Sample on Domestic Violence, Binge Drinking and Sexual Abuse in Family with Children
Type of paper:  Report
Categories:  Parenting Domestic violence Substance abuse Sexual abuse
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1838 words
16 min read


Families experiencing domestic violence, binge drinking and sexual abuse have had adverse effects not only on the parents and other caregivers but also to the children raised in these households. Domestic violence is highly associated with intimate partners abusing the other physically, emotionally or psychologically with the aim of intimidation, domination, and causing harm using force or by being violent (World Health Organization, n.d). It can also occur to other members of the household, including the elderly and children. Sexual abuse is usually the use of force and the making of threats by a perpetrator to indulge in sexual activity with another. Child sexual abuse is committed by the perpetrator taking advantage of the minor who cannot consent to the act (American Psychological Association, 2020). Binge drinking is a pattern of taking alcohol in excess without the person realizing it. The individual blood alcohol concentration is 0.8 grams percent and above (Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 2019). Children growing up in families with the three problems of sexual abuse, domestic violence, and binge drinking are likely to have behaviour and growth challenges. The assignment provides a Child Protection Conference Report of a family I am working with to explain the impact of sexual abuse, domestic violence and binge drinking will have on the family with children, their needs and the recommended decision to address the problems.

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Family and Child Analysis

I am a from the Community NHS Trust, the health visitor to Harry's family, to assess and report on the situation of the family and their needs to protect the children from sexual abuse, domestic violence and the effects of binge drinking. Based on the case scenario of the family I met. Harry's family consists of nine members, father (Harry Adams), mother (Lucy Adams), two children (son (Charlie) and daughter (Chloe, NHS No. 4576 3767 37902), two maternal grandparents and two paternal grandparents. Charlie attends a local primary school, and Chloe has not yet started schooling. The children live with their parents. However, Chloe lives with her mother most of the time due to her condition of global development delay (GDD). Charlie frequently lives with his maternal grandparents to assist Lucy in coping with Chloe.

The child, Chloe, is subject to the conference due to her situation of GDD. Charlie is facing a behaviour problem of reduced attention span, school work, and aggressiveness towards other children. These behaviour challenges are connected to binge drinking, domestic violence and sexual abuse even though there are no reports of the previous injury in the family. Chloe is a very quiet child and has a problem with GDD as per the diagnosis results from the Child Development Centre, and that confirms Chloe's on-going health issues. The illness is evident with Chloe's poor pronunciation of single words, poor hand/eye co-ordination, eating and walking challenges as reported by the Child Development Centre. Based on the two and half year development check of Chloe, the disease management requires more attention. The health visitor supports the referral of the child's situation to the CDC care for physiotherapy as well as speech and language therapy.

Based on the assessment, the family and child are affected by the problem of sexual abuse, binge drinking and domestic violence. The three elements are described as the toxic trio affecting families by creating the risk of psychological, neglect, emotional and physical harm to the members (Bradbury-Jones, Appleton, & Watts, 2016). Many of the cases of family issues are associated with one or two of the elements of the toxic trio (Brandon et al., 2011). Furthermore, domestic violence and substance misuse are interrelated compound and frequently occurring problems and precursors of other issues in the family as well as the society at large (Bromfield, 2010). The family and child needs in Harry's household are defined by the factors leading to the complicated and challenging situations in the home and how they affect the parents and their children. There are unmet health needs for the child, and this complicates the case of Chloe's illness.

Sexual Abuse

The maternal grandparents and specifically the grandfather of Chloe, caring for Charlie, have been accused of sexually abusing the boy. This is a risk factor that the mother should be keen not to expose Chloe to sexual abuse from the grandfather. Obtaining a strong community network from peers and family members is critical for parents raising children is necessary to support the child emotionally (Sanders & Turner, 2018). It seems that Chloe's parents have neglected their responsibility in getting involved in how the grandparents raised Charlie. That could communicate the possibility of Chloe being sexually assaulted by the grandfather too. As a disabled child, Chloe may have been taken advantage of and sexually abused by the grandfather and threatened to keep silent. According to the NSPCC (2020), children with disabilities have a likeliness of being sexually abused as they have communication challenges of what is happening to them and the world around them. Blyth and Solomon (2012) added it is essential to consider the voice of the child in child protection cases. Based on these findings, Chloe could be exposed to sexual abuse from her grandfather, and this complicates the situation since the report from the social worker has not been obtained.

Domestic Violence

Chloe is exposed to domestic violence at home. However, Lucy's description of the Direct Support Professional (DSP) contradicts the report to the police. The black eyes and emotional distress reported and witnessed by the police in the presence of the children is a clear indication that Chloe is exposed to domestic violence of her parents. The report shows that Harry was drunk and Lucy in emotional distress as well as black-eyed when the police arrived. The experiences of Lucy in her marriage confirm that many women fail to acknowledge and seek help in violent domestic relationships. Alcohol drinking is highly associated with intimate domestic violence whereby the partner has used alcohol before the assault, as confirmed in the family of Harry and Lucy (WHO, n.d).

Furthermore, high-risk victims of domestic violence stay for 2.3 years and medium-risk victims about three years before looking for help (SaveLives, 2015). The development and health of Chloe are at risk of becoming worse due to the domestic violence between the parents. According to Middleton and Hardy (2014), children exposed to domestic violence have detrimental health outcomes. These kids experience more emotional stress that is harmful to their brain development and impairment of sensory and cognitive growth (Unicef, 2006).

Binge Drinking

Chloe's father, Harry, is a heavy drinker even though he does not accept the fact that he is an alcoholic. Chloe is exposed to the misuse of alcohol in the home environment. Harry noted that he drinks to contain his emotions, and that explains the inability to control emotions as a significant influence of drinking alcohol. Effective parenting is affected by binge drinking, and this may cause childhood trauma (Milford et al., 2006).

Further, substance misuse not only impacts on parenting but also the capability of a person to prioritize the needs and welfare of the child (Beckett, 2007). Chloe's father demonstrates these parenting problems due to alcoholism. Harry is always away and leaving Chloe to the care of Lucy alone. Children exposed to parent's substance abuse are at a higher risk of neglect, emotional and physical abuse (NSPCC, 2020). Chloe is exposed to the risk of neglect, emotional, cognitive and physical abuse in the long term. Rosscow (2016) stated that children growing in the exposure of alcohol experience mental and physical challenges as well as behavioural problems. Such children, like Chloe, also encounter difficulties in the formation of relationships, demonstration of poor social skills, lacking self-confidence and mental health issues (Horbat & Frankel, 2005).

Health Visitor Services

I am working with the family as a health visitor to establish their problems and make a decision on the best ways in which the children and parents can be helped to improve their lives. As a health visitor, I am working with Mrs. Lucy Adams and her daughter Chloe aged two and a half years old (30 months). The services provided to Lucy and Chloe entail a universal partnership with the family as part of the Healthy Child Program (HCP) (Department of Health, 2009). The HCP is provided to parents and children at the early life phases of life with the main focus on the universal preventive service of screening, immunization, health as well as reviews on the development of the child. The parents are given advice relating to wellbeing, parenting and health of the growing kids. Such a service is critical for Mrs. Lucy and Chloe due to the recently diagnosed GDD, a disease of concern for the child. GDD is an impairment of various developmental domains, including excellent, gross, cognition, communication, personal skills, social skills and living skills (Jeong et al., 2016).

Families with children suffering GDD may need health visitor services concerning the challenge affecting the health and development of the child (Institute of Health Visiting, 2020). The health services provider engages with the family, guides and gives counsel. A health assessment has been conducted and advice provided to the family for the support of the affected child, Chloe. The health visitor services also entail providing referrals to other community services as well as protective work to help in safeguarding the children. Based on the assessment, there were no allegations of sexual abuse in the family reported in the past.

The Decision for the Child to be Considered at the Child Protection Conference

Chloe has GDD. Different measures have been taken to address the situation. Various agencies and professionals have been working with the family to improve the outcomes of the parents and the child. The involvement of a health visitor is critical to provide Mrs. Lucy with the appropriate guidance on caring for Chloe and helping her develop. To address the issue of health hazards in the home environment, the health visitor discussed with the family about home safety issues and provided Mrs. Lucy with a leaflet with the same information as reference material. The health visitor provision of advice on solid foods that Chloe can eat was useful to Lucy to help in meeting the dietary requirements for Chloe every day. The CDC needs to continue providing the required therapies to Chloe until she recovers from GDD. The child's progress is also being monitored by CPC/GP to ensure Chloe does not miss any of the appointments.

Based on the observation, the parents of Chloe are making an effort to respond to the child's needs. Mrs. Lucy has taken the proper measures for Chloe to get all immunizations and development checks. Chloe is also registered with a dentist for continual checking of the teeth. Lucy is working well with the health visitor to obtain more guidance on caring for Chloe. As a mother, Lucy has remained close to her daughter and remains positive about the illness. The brother Charlie is also closer to his sister, and this relationship is essential for improved development for Chloe. The maternal grandparents are helping Charlie to enable Lucy to handle Chloe's situation most of the time.

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