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Teens in these roles may attempt to escape from this pressure or anxiety through running away or taking their own lives.It may seem harmless to see your child engage in violent video games, watch movies with graphic violence or even play with toy guns, but the reality is that many teens learn violent behaviors from exposure to media and violent examples in the home.Because the approval of peers is so important at this age, many teens would prefer to hide what is going on in their families than risk being ostracized by their peers.These children may end up running away to avoid having the secret of what is going on in their families get out to their peers in addition to running away to escape the violence within their homes.Teens who feel this way may believe that running away may solve the violence against one of their parents because they blame themselves for the abuse and feel that by removing themselves from the situation, they are removing the cause of abuse.All of these behaviors may either lead a parent or family to “throw out” a teen.The adolescent may feel extreme guilt over not being able to prevent the domestic violence from occurring, or, in some cases, feeling they are somehow to blame for the family’s problems.They may also experience reactions similar to those of adults, including: Teens from violent homes experience guilt and shame about their violent homes and fear the consequences of talking about the abuse within the home.
In fact, violence is common on most mainstream television shows as well as in cartoons.
FACT: Alcohol and drugs can and do exacerbate violence, but they are NEVER the cause of violence.
Additionally, many people who batter do not drink heavily and many alcoholics do not beat their partners.
Carlson (1990) found that adolescent observers of marital violence acted out in a number of ways including running away, using violence against their parents, and using violence against their dating partners.
According to Mc Neal and Amato (1998), children who have witnessed parents’ marital violence may blame themselves for violence between their parents, resulting in feelings of guilt and lowered self-esteem.