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How Surviving Physical Abuse from Childhood Can Affect Someone

Surviving physical abuse as a child can have severe and serious impacts that last into adulthood. These effects can appear in many ways – emotional, physical, psychological, etc.

Mental Health Issues: Increased risk of mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, and suicidal tendencies.

Physical Health Consequences: Long-term health issues, including chronic pain, cardiovascular problems, and autoimmune disorders, may be associated with the stress from childhood physical abuse.

Difficulty in Relationships: Struggles with forming and maintaining healthy relationships due to trust issues, fear of intimacy, or challenges with communication.

Behavioral Problems: Higher likelihood of engaging in risky behaviors, substance abuse, or aggressive behaviors as coping mechanisms.

Impact on Self-Esteem: Lower self-esteem and a negative self-image, often resulting from feelings of worthlessness and shame associated with the abuse.

Current research shows that 30-40% of CSA victims become perpetrators of abuse themselves, leading to the risk of a continuous cycle without outside therapeutic intervention.

It’s important to seek help from a professional if you’re struggling – healing takes time, and you’re certainly not alone. While healing isn’t easy, and there is no ‘quick fix,’ it is possible, and there are resources and support out there for you.


Springer, K. W., Sheridan, J., Kuo, D., Carnes, M. (2007). “Long-term physical and mental health consequences of childhood physical abuse: Results from a large population-based sample of men and women.” Child Abuse & Neglect, 31(5), 517-530. Available at:

Widom, C. S., Czaja, S. J., & Dutton, M. A. (2014). Childhood victimization and lifetime revictimization. Child Abuse & Neglect, 38(3), 533-543.

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