Recent numbers reveal thousands of children involved in domestic violence situations
The National Domestic Violence Hotline and "Loveisrespect" connects with victims and survivors of domestic violence through calls, online chats and text messages 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Just last year, the organization received more than 464,000 outcries throughout the United States. That's a close to a 30,000 increase from the year before. Officials with the hotline said more than 64,000 of those calls involved children.
"There are young people who will reach out to Loveisrespect to say my parent is in an abusive relationship,” said Cameka Crawford with the National Domestic Hotline and Loveisrespect. “How do I help?
Erica Engberg said the higher number of calls matches what she sees at Family Violence and Prevention Services in San Antonio.
“There's just been so many kids that come through,” Engberg said.
Many children she’s worked with experienced anxiety, fear and guilt and some of the situations they were in at home became so intense, they ended in death.
“It’s a hard grief for the kids to have to go through and that's what we are trying to do is prevent that from happening,” Engberg said.
Engberg encourages children to simply talk to someone to stop the cycle of violence.
“They deserve to be in a healthy relationship,” Engberg said.
That’s where the hotline can help.
“If someone approaches you and they say they may be experiencing an unhealthy or abusive relationship behaviors believe them,” Crawford said.