W5 Quiz 1 - Question 4

Consider the case of Mary Ellen Wilson discussed in Chapter 2, which resulted in the creation of the child welfare system. - How can each of the following theories be used to better explain the conditions under which she was found? - How can the theories be used to inform treatment of the child and family to mitigate long-term consequences from the abuse and neglect? (A) Social learning theory Considering at that time there was no law enforcement for child welfare which made it acceptable and normal to leave children wherever and let the families do as they see fit. This theory describes how social behaviors are taught through observing and imitating, which can explain why Mary Wilson was found with the biological father's ex-wife abused and neglected. This theory informs that if we uphold society's standards to stop abusive households and provide assistance to children then it will influence their behavior to show more compassion in the long term. (B) Attachment theory There was no doubt that Mary Wilson grew up in a nonsecure environment leading to believe that there was no attachment between her and the caregiver. This creates negative characteristics for the Mary such as being fearful, low self-esteem, and high anxiety levels. This theory shows that creating a secure attachment style with comfort and support will help the child develop more properly with a better mentality of themselves and others in the long run. (C) Family systems theory It explains how there is a certain balance to maintain within every family as each has an important role. Since neither the biological mother or father took any roles in Mary's life it left all the responsibilities to the ex-wife who created a disturbing and harsh environment. With the information provided it explains how each parent or family member of the child has an impact. Additionally, each member needs to take responsibility especially the parents to care for the child. (D) Ecological systems theory This theory shows how it's multiple interactions between the child's microsystem, mesosystem, exosystem, and macrosystem that can influence a child's development. The caregiver who neglectful would be in the microsystem since they are the most directly associated to the child, and luckily the neighbor who helped report the abuse would be categorized in the exosystem. This shows the connection of how Mary was able to be found by Ms. Wheeler in such a distraught environment. Teaching this to families or others such as teachers or prominent organizations could assist in educating people to look out for signs of abuse. This theory also explains how every system plays a part in the child's development. (E) Trauma-informed theory and practice
This concept acknowledges how an individual can have long lasting effects of trauma and leave an unsettling mentality. In the case of Marry Ellen she was whipped and left in the cold as reported by Ms. Wheeler and the neighbor. This also shows how Mis. Wheeler was able to indicate such abuse and make a difference in the atmosphere of the child by taking her away from more trauma in the future. This theory is beneficiary in assisting the neglected because it helps them address the trauma that they endured. By doing this it can aid in moving forward of the individuals life and progress to a healthier development.
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