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Government guidelines define emotional abuse as: “the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child to the extent that it has a severe impact on the child’s emotional development”.
Emotional abuse may involve:
- Constantly putting a child down. Or making them feel they are useless or not loved.
- Not giving a child the space to express their views.
- Silencing a child, or ‘making fun’ of what they say.
- Expecting a child to do things that are too much for their age.
- Overprotecting a child. Preventing a child from taking part in normal social activities.
- Exposing a child to the ill-treatment of someone else. For example, seeing or hearing domestic abuse.
- Causing a child to feel frightened or in danger at home.