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Words hurt: Insults, yelling outrank being positive parents

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Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.

At least 2,500 young adults, ages 18 to 25, may be giving that common saying the side eye during a recent survey. According to a Reuters report, the surveyors "tended to have more psychiatric symptoms like anxiety and depression when either their mother or their father was verbally aggressive."

And even with one positive parent in the household, the negative parent trumped that child's ill feelings.

CDC reports that the total lifetime cost of child maltreatment is $124 billion annually. Over 3.7 million referrals of child mistreatment were reported in 2011, which is at least six referrals every minute.

Maltreatment doesn't just consist of physical abuse. Three other common forms of abuse are sexual abuse, neglect and mental abuse.

The 2011 rates of victimization per 1,000 children were 14.3 percent African American; 11.4 percent American Indian / Alaska Natives; 8.5 percent Pacific Islanders; 8.6 percent Hispanics; 7.9 percent for non-Hispanic whites; 1.7 percent for Asians.

Lower quality schools, single-parent households and poverty may increase the risks of youth abuse, according to Reuters.

For people who would like to be more active in their communities by preventing child abuse, join organizations such as Prevent Child Abuse America. The Springfield, Ill. chapter may be contacted here. Upcoming events include Child Abuse Prevention Awareness Month, Chair-ish Every Child and Superhero Walk for Children.

Recommended Reading:

Prevent Child Abuse Illinois: "20 Ways to De-Stress Your Holiday"

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