Generally, abuse is a term used to describe harmful treatment toward a person. This term may include physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, exploitation, and neglect (OHA, 2012). Abuse may occur across the life span. Additionally, cases of abuse may not be unique to one particular race, gender, age, or economic class. As a result, the recognition of abuse might pose as challenging as the treatment. Psychologists may make assumptions about symptoms and patterns of abuse that may lead to errors in assessment and diagnosis.
For this Discussion, select a personal bias pertaining to the topic of abuse. As a future professional in the field, consider how personal biases may influence assessment and diagnosis.