What Would Happen to My Mom if I Told Someone About the Abuse?

Published: February 28, 2018
Dear TeenHealthFX,
My mom can make it where now I am always tense around her. Instead of motherly love, I get yelling slapping cussing scratching and guilt trips. What did I do to deserve this? Having a hard time with homework and not trusting her because of the arguments. Two times she has broken her phone during an argument. The first time she threw her phone at the wall that I was leaning against and it hit maybe 2 feet away from me. The second time she was downstairs and threw her phone at the ground after an argument. One day while we were arguing I was refusing to show her my homework she had already called me her little sh!t, scratched me, and slapped me and when I finally said okay Ill show you my homework she calmed down really fast. I feel unsafe now at home and have a plan to go to my best friend's house and tell her parents about the abuse so I can be free. I still love my mom though... and my dad doesn't know and I'm scared once I tell someone my dad will move to Connecticut, where he goes every Monday thru Thursday for work, and take me with him... I can't take the abuse anymore though. My mom also is not the most mentally stable person... she had thrown a chair at me once and during an argument she took everything out of my room including my bunny stuffed animal from when I was a toddler..... What would happen to my mom though if I did tell an adult about the abuse? Would there be a trial?
Signed: What Would Happen to My Mom if I Told Someone About the Abuse?

Dear What Would Happen to My Mom if I Told Someone About the Abuse?,

TeenHealthFX is very sorry to hear that you are in such an incredibly difficult situation right now. We can absolutely appreciate that you love your mom because she is your mother, but that you are also feeling unsafe in the home right now because there is so much anger getting in the way of her being able to be patient, calm, warm and loving towards you. FX does want to stress that you did nothing to deserve this and that this is not your fault or any negative statement about you. For whatever the reasons are, your mother is not in a place where she is able to control her temper and be loving to you – but that is due to personal issues she is dealing with, not because you are unlovable or deserving of this.

FX does think it would be a good idea for you to speak to a trusted adult about what is going on at home. For one thing, it is important for adults to intervene to ensure that you are in a home environment that feels safe to you. It is also important for you to get the support and help that you need, such as by meeting with a private therapist who can give you a safe space to deal with your feelings around this and all of the ways this situation has impacted you.

When suspected child abuse is going on, generally the first step is to call the state child protective services who will assess the situation to see what is needed. Some children are removed from their homes because it is deemed unsafe, with plans of counseling for all family members generally with the hope of being able to bring the family back together again once things are stabilized. Some children stay in their homes but are monitored by a child protective services worker while services, such as counseling, are put in place to address the issues going on.

If you are concerned about what might happen in your situation, you can call The Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline, a free and confidential hotline that is available 24/7 (1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453). The can provide you with some support and guidance on how to proceed, as well as information on what you can expect.

Again, FX is incredibly sorry to hear about what you have been dealing with. We can appreciate how sad, angry and scared you must be feeling about this situation. But we hope you will continue to remind yourself that this is not your fault, that you are deserving of love, and that one day you will be an adult and will have so much more power and control over what your home environment will be like. We also hope you will reach out to trusted adults about what is going on so you do not have to deal with this on your own and so you can get the support and help you need. Finally, we want you to remember how strong you are and we hope you will hold onto your sense of hope no matter what happens.  


If you live in northern New Jersey and need help finding a therapist you can call the Access Center from Atlantic Behavioral Health at 888-247-1400. Outside of this area you can log onto the US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website for referrals in your area. You can also contact your insurance company to get a list of in-network mental health providers or check with your school social worker or psychologist to get a list of referrals in your area.

If you are ever in any kind of emergency situation with your mom where you are worried about what she might do, you can call 9-1-1.

Signed: TeenHealthFX