An abused child is a child who has been the victim of violent or cruel behavior which can occur repeatedly over time.
Abuse takes many forms: physical, verbal, emotional, and sexual.
Physical abuse can be being the victim of physical violence such as beatings and punishments that are too frequent, inappropriate, or excessive.
Verbal abuse can take the form of name-calling, put downs, humiliation, and shame.
Emotional abuse can take form of being torn between feuding parents or parents that place too much emotional pressure on a child.
Sexual abuse is the use of children in a sexual manner for an adult's physical or emotional gratification.