The Plight of Abandoned Children

abandoned children

The plight of abandoned children is a heartbreaking and all too common global phenomenon. These helpless children, with no one to take care of them, are exposed to hunger, disease and a host of other dangers. The problem of child abandonment is so severe that many governments have passed laws designed to prevent the worst outcomes. These laws, known as safe haven laws, allow newborns to be dropped off in designated locations without exposing the parents to prosecution for neglect.

Abandonment in a more literal sense may occur when a parent fails to meet his child’s emotional needs by neglecting to communicate or spend time with him. Emotional abandonment by a parent can cause serious problems for the child, including feelings of low self worth and shame. This type of abandonment is a violation of state law and is taken very seriously by courts.

Children who have been emotionally abandoned often grow up to be prone to relationship issues. In addition to fearing that their own partner will leave them, they are also at risk for unhealthy relationships, says Mignon Walker, MD, a psychiatrist at BetterHelp, an online counseling service. Individuals with this fear may also have a hard time keeping jobs or taking responsibility for their actions.

Some of the most dramatic examples of abandoned children are the result of economic difficulties that break up families and leave children stranded. In recent years, this has become more common in developed countries where unemployment and financial difficulties have caused more people to lose their jobs or struggle to find employment. These circumstances have led to an increase in the number of children being sent to welfare centers, where they are often placed in foster care.

The concept of abandonment has been the subject of many stories, poems and paintings. The most recognizable example is the proverbial newborn wrapped in a blanket and left on a doorstep, but these kinds of cases are becoming less common because of the fact that most states now have “safe haven” laws in place that allow mothers to legally drop off their babies for adoption without exposing themselves to charges of neglect.

Another type of abandonment is the psychological kind, in which a child feels blamed for the abandonment by her parents and feels deep guilt and shame. Abandonment is usually not done intentionally and can be caused by a number of factors, including mental illness, poverty, addiction and abuse.

An individual with abandonment issues can be triggered by his past experiences with unreliable caregivers, according to Chrystal Dunkers, LPC, a licensed counselor at Point and Pivot Counseling in New Jersey. These individuals are often unable to form lasting connections with other adults because they can’t trust others to be there for them, and they may have a hard time trusting themselves. They often feel worthless and blame themselves for their own misfortunes, believing that they deserve to be abandoned because of what happened to them in the past.