Physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, or neglect all have a severe detrimental effect on a child’s self-esteem. An individual may never recover from the negative perspective which they have developed of themselves. Self-hatred due to abuse may be carried into adulthood and into the individual’s relationship with their spouse and children.
A child abuser is often suffering from extreme depression and self-doubt. As a child, they may have learned that inflicting abuse in order to instill fear and control is the most effective way to maintain a loyal and faithful family. In order to achieve this control, a child abuser may resort to violence and physical abuse. They may feel that if their spouse and children are not afraid of them, that they will leave and create a happy life without the abuser.
A child abuser may not enjoy inflicting pain on a family, but due to severely low self-esteem, they may feel that it is necessary. Also, child abusers often suffer from psychological disorders or substance abuse.