1-That is so sad, I think sometimes they don’t know about other treatments, and other times they have such strong beliefs in the tradition they feel it will work. Did the child end up recovering? The homeschool group we are a part of had a discussion about healing practices in other cultures. One family helps support a missionary family and that families daughter got sick while there were in another country. The village leaders offered to I think it was have an old lady spit on the girl. The kids got to learn about how important it is to be respectful of the cultures, but to also educate them on more appropriate treatments that are available.
2-Abused children of the school-age range face many issues in school and with peer relationships. These kids may also complain of headaches or fatigue that is not explainable. Teachers may notice and question home life when school-age kids start acting differently.
3-I’m going to surprise even myself by saying that, in this context and for the cultural reasons mentioned, that I do not feel that this is child abuse. I think that we have to look at the intent behind the action. If the action was meant to be punitive then I think that’s a different story. If the action holds some significance in their culture or is a sort of right of passage, that frames it in a different way. I think that there are many things in our culture, ways we treat our children, things we do to our children, that might be considered child abuse/neglect by those in other cultures.