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My Grandma is Basically Making Me Live in a Prison

Published: August 25, 2017
Dear TeenHealthFX,
My grandma says its not abuse when she slaps me across the face but she left a bruise on my arm and she is basically making me live in prison.
Signed: My Grandma is Basically Making Me Live in a Prison

Dear My Grandma is Basically Making Me Live in a Prison,

It is definitely concerning that your grandmother is hitting you to the point of leaving bruises and that your home has come to feel like a prison to you. It is understandably having a very negative impact on you and on your relationship with your grandmother. Because of this, it is very important for you to reach out for help.

According to

Child abuse is when a parent or caregiver, whether through action or failing to act, causes injury, death, emotional harm or risk of serious harm to a child. There are many forms of child maltreatment, including neglect, physical abuse, sexual abuse, exploitation and emotional abuse.

Child abuse can be in the form of physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse and child neglect. To learn more about what constitutes these different forms of abuse, as well as the correlating signs of abuse, click here.

Given the situation you are in, TeenHealthFX thinks that it is very important for you to talk to a trusted adult about what is going on in your home with your grandmother so that someone can intervene on your behalf. It may be necessary for a professional working with child protective services in your state to meet with you and with your grandmother to get a better idea of what is happening in the home to determine what steps need to be taken to keep you safe.

You could speak to a school counselor or your primary care physician who could speak to your grandmother on your behalf and/or call child protective services depending on the severity of the issue. Another options is to call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453), a 24-hour hotline with resources to aid in every child abuse situation. All calls are confidential. You can also click here for a list of local child protective service numbers that you can use depending on what state you are living in.

In New Jersey, any person having reasonable cause to believe that a child has been subjected to abuse or acts of abuse should immediately report this information to the State Central Registry (SCR). If the child is in immediate danger, call 911 as well as 1-877 NJ ABUSE (1-877-652-2873). A concerned caller does not need proof to report an allegation of child abuse and can make the report anonymously.

Signed: TeenHealthFX