A parent’s worst nightmare: child abuse during daycare

Amber Green

Parents have many fears when it comes to their children. But the worst nightmare a parent can have is finding out that his or her child is being abused while in the care of someone else.

Most college parents have to rely on someone to care for their children while in class, whether it’s at a daycare center, a public school, with a babysitter, family and/or friends. College students who are parents have to face that reality at some point in their academic career.

College parents not only have the stress of school and/or work on their mind, but worrying if their children are being abused or neglected when they depart from them is even more nerve racking.

I know how nerve racking it can be because as a single mother I am always on the edge after I leave my three-year-old twin girls with the babysitter.

In the year of 2007, there was an estimate of 1,760 child fatalities reported by the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS). I mean what parent wouldn’t be frightened when they read statistics like this?

A child who dies from the result of an injury or some form of neglect is defined as a “child fatality” according to the NCANDS.

There are many signs parents should be aware of if they suspect their children are victims of child abuse or neglect. Pay close attention if you notice your children don’t have an appetite to eat, or that they have a tendency to overeat, those can be signs that some form abuse is happening. If your child starts to have nightmares or begins bed-wetting after they have been potty trained; those also could be ways to determine if child abuse or neglect is present.

No parent should have to worry about if his or her child is being abused or neglected but reality is, it happens. We as parents can’t completely walk around with fear that our children will become victims of child abuse. But what we can do is become educated on how to prevent child abuse and how to detect it by visiting www.childwelfare.gov

The Web site is filled with resources on the different types of abuse and neglect, how to prevent this from happening to your child and statistics on the child fatalities, statewide and nationwide.

Additional web sites with resources and tips can be found at: