Resilience and mental health

Resilience and mental health



Child Maltreatment

Chalyne Arvie

Gary Zarchy


October 14, 2019

What is the impact of child maltreatment on delinquency?

Several studies have shown a significant correlation between delinquency and child maltreatment. This translates to children that have experienced maltreatment shown some delinquency tendencies (Ryan et al, 2010). In worst cases, they grew up fully into criminal activities and were always on the wrong side of the law even later in their adult years. Most hardcore criminals both outside jails and those convicted and are in corrective facilities will account for their lifestyle as a result of the maltreatment they received in their earlier days. Maltreating a child affects the thinking of a child. It creates a sense of unworthiness of positive attention from the people under whose care they are. This leads to delinquency in the sense that they would try to attract attention by doing acts that other children would not do to see whether they will be granted positive attention from those that are not showing them the care they deserve.

When this attention is not rendered, one may keep committing minor crimes and before they are aware they become delinquents marked by the law. When lucky enough they end up in corrective institutions before they blow into full criminals. Also, the maltreatment forwarded to them may mean they lack basic supplies and hence they turn to petty crime like shoplifting to cater to their needs. Those that are physically and emotionally abused are likely to become aggressive and seek to defend themselves at the slightest provocation and this easily lands them on the other side of the law (Ryan et al, 2010). As a result, any form of maltreatment given to a child will most likely result in delinquency. It is therefore important that caregivers, guardians, and parents are careful about how they treat children and protect them from deliberate lack of basic needs, physical and emotional abuse.

What is the impact of Child Protective Services’ involvement in delinquent behavior?

Child Protective Services come in place to rescue and rest children who have been neglected for one reason or another by their caregivers, guardians, and parents. There are times where this intervention leads to more harm than good. This may not be the intention of the state that sought to investigate and later intervene but mainly because of the steps that are to be taken, considering the laws involved. For instance, once it is established that a child has been physically or sexually abused by a parent they may be taken away from their parents and end up in foster care. This leads to separation from their siblings or the other parent who genuinely cared for them but is just not in a position to cater to their needs. Beside this emotional baggage, these children may most likely be met with a hostile environment in their foster homes that negatively affect their behavior and they result in delinquency (Solomon & Åsberg, 2012).

On the other hand, CPS is necessary for the children because it protects them from becoming juvenile delinquents. Once a child is rescued from an abusive home they are put to a nice and caring home through the CPS programs. Their growth is well nurtured and counseled to let go of their bad past and focus on creating a positive future for themselves. Therefore, it can be said that CPS positively impacts on the lives of children and gears it off delinquency (Solomon & Åsberg, 2012). This is what the state wishes to achieve while the rest is left to chance. To fully acquire this, ways to mitigate the emotional damage caused by having to be separated from loved ones should be looked into. Allowing visits and get-togethers for siblings, or trying to move them into similar or nearby homes would be possible solutions.

What is the role of resilience as a protective factor?

In the simplest of languages, resiliency is defined as the ability to bounce back from difficult situations. This simply means that one does not stay focused on the negatives of life that come their way. They do not allow what is negative to put them down at all times. It is important to take time and grieve, cry or moan depending on the misfortune that has come our way. It is equally important that people do not prolong this beyond necessary. In that that way people get back to other ways of life and forge forward hoping for a better tomorrow. The earlier one can bounce back the better (Troy & Mauss, 2011).

Resilience is characterized by self-awareness, purpose, mindfulness, positive relationships, and self-care. These are known as the five pillars of resilience. Self-awareness allows one to move on from bad experiences as they know they are defined by more than what did not work out. Purpose demands that one keeps moving towards their goals and objectives despite being met with obstacles along the way. Having people that think positively and encourage one to their best is another key to being resilient. These would push one to their objectives as they know letting a hurt/grieved person to wallow in sadness amounts to depression and nothing positive hence these positive relationships work to remove one from their misery. Mindfulness breeds self-care as much as it does resilience (Troy & Mauss, 2011). Being able to separate hardships and not blame one for their occurrence is very important. Self-care means one remembers to care for their physical, emotional, mental and spiritual fitness regardless of what they are facing.


Ryan, J. P., Hong, J. S., Herz, D., & Hernandez, P. M. (2010). Kinship foster care and the risk of juvenile delinquency. Children and Youth Services Review32(12), 1823-1830.

Solomon, D., & Åsberg, K. (2012). Effectiveness of child protective services interventions as indicated by rates of recidivism. Children and Youth Services Review34(12), 2311-2318.

Troy, A. S., & Mauss, I. B. (2011). Resilience in the face of stress: Emotion regulation as a protective factor. Resilience and mental health: Challenges across the lifespan1(2), 30-44.