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What are adverse childhood experiences? Seeing domestic violence is one of them.

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What are adverse childhood experiences? Seeing domestic violence is one of them.

Picture of Anne Saker
Cincinnati Enquirer
Wednesday, October 20, 2021

A landmark study from 1995-1997 study found 10 umbrella events that most often cause trauma in childhood. Four or more adverse childhood experiences can lead to toxic stress, which can raise risk factors for disease and early death in adulthood.

Emotional abuse: A parent, stepparent or adult living in a home swore at, insulted or acted in a way that made a child afraid of physical hurt.

  • Physical abuse: A parent, stepparent or adult living in the home pushed, grabbed, slapped, threw something at a child or hit a child so hard to leave marks or injury.
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  • Sexual abuse: An adult, relative family friend or stranger at least five years older touched or fondled the child's body in a sexual way, made the child touch his or her body in a sexual way or attempted to have sexual intercourse with the child.
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  • Mother treated violently: The mother or stepmother was pushed, grabbed, slapped, had something thrown at her, kicked, bitten, hit with a fist, hit with something hard, repeatedly hit for over at least a few minutes, or threatened or hurt by a knife or gun by the father or stepfather or mothers boyfriend.
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  • Substance abuse: A household member abused alcohol or used street drugs.
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  • Mental illness: A household member was depressed or mentally ill, or a household member attempted suicide.
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  • Separation or divorce: Parents were ever separated or divorced.
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  • Incarceration: A household member went to prison.
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  • Emotional neglect: A child did not experience feeling important or special, or felt loved, or that the family looked out for each other and felt close, or felt that the family was a source of strength and support.
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  • Physical neglect: A child had no one to take care of and protect the child, or no one to take the child to the doctor when needed, or that there wasn't enough to eat or clean clothes, the parents were too drunk or too high to provide care.

[This article was originally published by Cincinnati.com.]

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