The Protection Services Team at Lurie Children’s believes that prevention begins by understanding normal childhood behaviors that trigger child maltreatment. As children grow and develop, they pass through many stages that can sometimes prove difficult for the best of parents. For example, all infants cry. All infants are dependent on others to care for them. Most toddlers have challenging behaviors, especially during the “terrible twos.”
Establishing rules, toilet training and parenting in general can be very trying during this time. Some of these stages may pose particular difficulties for some parents or caretakers, especially those who are stressed by other life events and those who have little experience or knowledge about how to care for children.
Since children do not come with instruction manuals, parents often don't know what to expect from young children. Parents may believe children are being difficult or misbehaving, while their behavior is actually normal and expected for their age. Learning about normal behavior for different age groups can help alleviate some of the stress parents feel, and make child maltreatment less likely.
Some of the most common triggers for child abuse include crying, discipline issues and toilet training.