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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Tazewell, Virginia USA

    Child Abuse... how to prove it?

    Yes I posted this is the Domestic Violence, Abuse Forum, but there has been no response so I thought I would try here. This is for my brother-in-law. He lives in NC but is under TN state law. First he has 2 children that he has joint custody of, but they live with their mom during the school year and live with him during the summer and he has every other weekend during the school year and she does the same during the summer. Anyway, for the past 1- 1.5 months everytime he gets his kids the oldest daughter has faint bruises from what she has said is belt marks (she's 8), and he hasn't taken pictures or anything because by the time he gets her the marks are fading away. He also doesn't want to call social services unless it's more than likely something will truly be done, for one doesn't want to what they would say falsely accuse, or get his daughter in trouble more for nothing. Is there anything elese he could do to prove she's being abused, such as call the school and have them on the look out or what would anyone suggest? All help or suggestions are appreciated. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Grandma B Guest
    If the child's school has any inkling she is being abused and hasn't reported it on their own, they could be in big trouble, as could the actual abuser. They are bound to report any cases of suspected abuse. Are the marks in a visible spot on her body?

    If you note indications of abuse on the next visit, take the child to a doctor or ER and have them documented. They will question the child and, if they suspect abuse, they will contact the proper authorities.

  3. #3
    smh33 Guest
    Since when is spanking with a belt child abuse?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    spanking a child with a belt may not be abuse, by legal definition, (my personal opinion, "weapons" should not be used on children), but if there are MARKS and these are FADING MARKS, don't you think that qualifies as abuse???

  5. #5
    smh33 Guest
    It highly depends on the severability and frequency, but in general I do not consider it abuse...only dicipline. Belts will leave marks just like switches or hands. I think too many people use abuse accusations simply to obtain the custody they want. My father had a belt in front of house and 1 in back specifically for whippings...it hurt but I was not abused and one puts a little more thought into choosing whether to break the rules when aware of and not liking the punishment. I know some do not approve of physical discipline these days but it is each parent's right to parent as they see fit.

  6. #6
    Grandma B Guest
    Originally posted by smh33
    I know some do not approve of physical discipline these days but it is each parent's right to parent as they see fit.
    Wrong! Children are daily removed from homes because parents are parenting as they "see fit".

  7. #7
    smh33 Guest
    Children are not removed for being spanked by a parent..whether by hand,belt or switch as along as it is not out of control. As parents, we have a fundamental right to parent as we see fit and why don't you show me one, just one case where a child was removed due to a parent using spankings by hand or belt. Please be rational also...I am not speaking of beltings that produce blood, or done daily, or for no reason. When you find the law that states you or anyone else can tell me how I can discipline my child,within reason...you let me know GrandmaB.

  8. #8
    Grandma B Guest
    How about this excerpt from your own state?

    § 50B-1. Domestic violence; definition.
    (a)Domestic violence means the commission of one or more
    of the following acts upon an aggrieved party or upon a minor
    child residing with or in the custody of the aggrieved party by
    a person with whom the aggrieved party has or has had a personal relationship, but does not include acts of self-defense:
    (1) Attempting to cause bodily injury, or intentionally
    causing bodily injury; or
    (2) Placing the aggrieved party or a member of the
    aggrieved party's family or household in fear of
    imminent serious bodily injury; or
    (3) Committing any act defined in G.S. 14-27.2 through
    G.S. 14-27.7.

  9. #9
    smh33 Guest
    A parent giving a child, thier own child, a whipping does not meet anything you listed...got anything better? You are already stretching it, but go ahead and try to prove state or gov. can interfere with a parent's right to discipline, with exception to cruel & unusual punishment which a belt whipping hardly qualifies as such. If I choose to spank my child, you nor the law has the right to intrude, even if I choose to spank with a belt. I'll be waiting...

    Oh, don't forget to go back and police my response to hounddog and the other thread about ex trying to pay court clerk or did you already give up on those?

    Last edited by smh33; 03-10-2002 at 11:26 AM.
  10. #10
    Ashlee1443 Guest
    I agree that the severity and occurance plays a major factor between distinguishing child abuse and a parent's personal choices regarding punishment towards their children.

    In my opinion, if I saw bruises on my child, I would not jump to conclusions, but rather, pay close attention to my child and be on the watch for any other marks....

    I agree with Grandma B, sometimes it is the parent's diciplinary actions that do put the children in harm, leading to abuse. So that statement by Smh can go both ways.

    I do not have a problem with parent's spanking their children, that's their "way of seeing fit" I suppose, but I myself, do not spank my child, ever since he was old enough to follow directions and has failed, I have resorted to alternate forms of punishment, and it works well for me, simply because he has learned that he will be "punished" for doing wrong, but he doesn't know what "abuse" is. I would suggest other ways of discipline before resorting to "hitting"...no need for anyone to be offended, this was simply my opinion.

  11. #11
    Grandma B Guest
    I don't fault parents for spanking their children, if a spanking means a few swats on their rump. However, an 8-year-old girl with bruises from being hit with a belt denotes excessive punishment. When a belt is used, it's no longer called a spanking. Using a belt is not serving to teach a child anything and it is done to HURT the child. Any professional observing the marks from the beating would be bound by law to report it as suspected abuse.

    Just a thought. If an adult hit another adult, with or without a belt, and left a bruise, they could be charged with assault and the victim could be granted a TRO. Should a defenseless child have less protection under the law?

    Last edited by Grandma B; 03-10-2002 at 07:53 PM.
  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Tazewell, Virginia USA

    Child Abuse

    First let me say, since I was the one who started this post, I am not saying that I do not believe in disciplining your child, because I have 3 kids (2 step & 1 of my own) and believe me the one of my own has been whipped with a belt, hand and fly swat, but I have and never will hit my child with such force as to leave bruises on the child that take days to disappear. That is where I believe the wrongfullness and abuse comes in. Now the bruises are on her legs and she usually wears jeans so no, no one can see them in plain sight. Let me say though that physical abuse is defined as, "Any injury to a child that is not caused by an accident. The injury may include bruises, welts, cuts, broken bones, burns, internal injuries, and even death.". So do I argue the point of right or wrong to whip your own child? No, because that would be like the pot calling the kettle black. Do I argue the point that a child shouldn't have bruises every visitation from being whipped period (with or without the belt).Thanks to all that have helped, even those that haven't agreed, because you all just give it a taste of what the courts could bring up, thanks again.

  13. #13
    smh33 Guest
    Pictures and dates would be your first step I would think...if you can show a pattern.....then I would inquire with a pediatrics for further opinion. It is too difficult to advise you go for child abuse given that here, we really only hear one side and have no way of 'seeing' the marks....sounds like you understand this. good luck.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    just curious as to what state laws smh follows on child abuse. in my state if there is a mark from discipline it is considered excessive! I was always told in classes to get licensed for daycare that if a child comes in with bruises and they are old enough to tell what is wrong then we should ask and if it is because of discipline or any other abuse reason we are to right a report for the state, we were also told that there is this sort of "three spank rule" (we don't spank in daycare we were just told about the law) if you spank a child with an open palm no more that three times and without leaving a red mark or bruise then it is considered discipline, if it is with anything other thatn open palm more that three times, it is considered abuse.

  15. #15
    smh33 Guest
    I go by N.C. laws and the laws for daycare workers are different for parents. You personally may not approve of 'corporal punishment' but many people grew up with it and it worked pretty good, judging yesterday compared to today.

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