They are actively involved in trying to understand to the abuse, predict when it will happen, protect themselves, their mother or their siblings and worrying about the consequences.
Fear and secrecy dominate family relationships, and survival becomes the primary goal of non-abusing family members.
They may also have irritable and irregular bowel habits, cold sores, and they may have problems with bed-wetting.
These complaints have been associated with depressive disorders in children, a common emotional effect of domestic violence.
Along with these general complaints of not feeling well, children who witness domestic violence may also appear nervous, as previously mentioned, and have short attention spans.
These children display some of the same symptoms as children who have been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
A 2011 CDC nationwide survey found that 23% of females and 14% of males who ever experienced rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner, first experienced some form of partner violence between 11 and 17 years of age.