The Silent Killer: Essay on Emotional Abuse

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The second article by Ackerman is on emotional abuse from the point of view of a victim who defines emotional abuse as the silent victimization of someone’s mind, body, and spirit. This article is an expressive detail of what an emotional abuse victim suffers and experiences and how it affects that individual in later life. The keyword used in this article is silence. When Ackerman talks about abuse to a degree it appears that she discusses emotional neglect as that is what silence is about and when she talks about communicating with children she wants to break that silence. However, later on, she says that it can be in form of verbal comments also in terms of criticism of appearance. The author admits that this term did not exist twenty years ago and even today it is blurred with other things like hypertension or eating disorders. However, she says there is a need to differentiate it. She believes that it is important to know the cause and understand why and how the person who inflicts the abuse does it. Once the victim becomes aware he or she will not allow anyone to do that.

The third article is by Andrew Vachss, who is an attorney specializing in child abuse cases most of his clients are children who have experienced one or the other type of child abuse. According to him the worst sort of an abuse a child could encounter is emotional abuse. To him, it is a “systematic diminishment” (Vachss, 1994) and may be either intentional or unintentional.

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