School is an escape for students living in an abusive home: How the pandemic is affecting them

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For some, staying at home is relaxing, but for others, it’s dreadful.

Priscila Castro, Multimedia Editor

With the coronavirus present at this time, it’s safer for everyone to stay home to prevent it from spreading. All students are now completing their work online and communicating with teachers and peers through Zoom. At first glance, it may seem like a vacation to not wake up early and sit in a classroom for hours.

But for some this is their nightmare.

Home isn’t always safe for every student and this hasn’t gotten much coverage.

Right now the talk is all about hoarding supplies, finding new hobbies, working out, online homework, lockdown, and politics. 

The most common type of abuse, domestic violence, is high in Santa Ana and these victims are constantly surrounded by anger, doors slamming, fear, punches, and worry.

It’s almost always the male figure who causes the abuse to the mother and children. 

Sometimes it’s both parents against the child.

I remember coming home to my biological father and mother always yelling at each other and throwing objects. This escalated quickly and my biological father soon physically abused my mom, and it would always happen during the night. I was the only one awake out of my four younger siblings to witness this violence occur. I felt useless because I couldn’t do anything. And even if I wanted to, I was way too terrified. I didn’t want to be punched like my mom.

It’s sad that this is very common here in Santa Ana. And the lockdown due to the coronavirus is making it worse because chances are the victims are experiencing more abuse than they were before. And it’s not like they want to stay home, but they have to. It’s harder for them to reach out for help. I always think of the children because I know they’re the most vulnerable. They’re not able to take care of themselves and rely on their parents. They can’t go to school to escape this anymore. They’re stuck and maybe even starting to lose hope. At school there’s so many distractions that help them get through. But without that, just imagine all the emotional baggage they’re dealing with. 

It does cause a lot of mental and emotional damage. It stays.

Children who are helpless have nowhere to escape because of the lockdown.

They are stuck at home dealing with the abuse and toxicity from their parents.

They can’t do much to help them cope with their feelings.

I’m just gonna say it: stop complaining about the lockdown. There are other people who have it way worse. 

Something we can all do is check up on them. Even if we can’t communicate with them in person, you can still text or FaceTime them. Just let them know you’re there for them. And because we have lots of time, try to get involved in their lives. Play online games together or make them something nice. It gives them reassurance. 

I pray for those who are surviving until this pandemic is over. I hope you come out stronger and willing to open up. I know it’s difficult to stay positive, but please do find what makes you happy and let that relieve a bit of your pain.