Child Abuse Devastates 3 Kids So Badly They Become 'Feral'

We all know that child abuse is horrible, but what are the detailed effects of this kind of trauma on a young body and mind? A courtroom in Portsmouth, Ohio, is learning the devastating impact that child abuse can have in the trial of three adults charged with systematically abusing three young children. A social services worker testified that the children -- who are considered "feral" because of their lack of social and learning skills due to their alleged horrific upbringing -- can't testify in a courtroom against their alleged perpetrators, who consist of their mother, their grandmother, and the mother's boyfriend.


The children were allegedly tied to their beds, perhaps for days at a time. Other accusations include being beaten with whips and having their food rationed, with the mother, Bobbi Sue Pack, reportedly holding the key to locked food cabinets around her neck.

Scioto County Assistant Prosecutor Julie Hutchinson told the court:

They were so terrified in the beginning that it took them three months before they could even talk about the abuse done to them.

Sex abuse investigator Brittany Mitchell testified:

These children, they would pace and they’d wring their little hands and bite their lips and hide their faces. I knew they were scared for their lives.

The children were reportedly so terrified of telling on their caretakers, they begged Mitchell not to repeat what they had said to anyone. It's a devastating look into the mind of a helpless and abused child -- and why he or she often doesn't report the abuse.

A psychotherapist testified to the withering toll the alleged abuse took on children's minds, saying:

They are almost like feral children in some respects. They have social and educational delays. They are angry, untrusting. They are plagued by nightmares and night terrors and have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder.

She said that when bad memories come to them, they will often jump on a table or curl into a ball on the floor and ask, "Are we safe?"

Ugh, just so devastating. Mitchell said that the children looked at her in a way she had never seen before and were too "intimidated" to speak.

The amount of work it is going to take for these poor children to feel some degree of normalcy and be able to function in society is just astronomical. Hopefully, they got out of this environment early enough that they can overcome at least a good portion of this early trauma.

Childhood abuse not only affects the children involved, but society as a whole. Not only do these children grow into dysfunctional, possibly violent, adults, but they have a greater likelihood of passing the abuse down through the generations.

More from The Stir: Mom Accused of Torturing Son to Death Could Have Been Stopped

Thank goodness these three children were taken away from their parents. Even if the allegations haven't been proven, they were clearly not doing well in their home.

Have you ever been the victim or know someone who was the victim of child abuse?


Image via Scioto County Sheriff's Office

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