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April 2000Vol. 1, No. 2Insights on Violence and Children

For an expert's insights into the effects that violence can have on children, read an interview by Caitlin Johnson with Betsy McAlister Groves, director of the Child Witness to Violence Project at Boston Medical Center in the Connect for Kids electronic newsletter.

In the interview, Groves shared the following observations:

  • Children who witness violence are affected in all aspects of their development, including emotional, social, and cognitive development
  • Identifying children affected by witnessing violence is difficult. Possible indicators include sleep disturbances, increased separation anxiety, changes in behavior, and chronic anxiety, but these symptoms can indicate other issues as well
  • Children traumatized by violence can heal, but their recovery is affected by many different factors; each child is unique in his or her response.

Groves's program provides counseling, advocacy, and outreach services children age 8 or younger who have witnessed violence, particularly family violence. The interview includes links to resources for additional information and assistance. The interview is posted at content_show.htm?amp;attrib_id=311&doc_id=26600. Or, visit the home page and scroll through the annotated list of stories.