New studies are showing the long-lasting and far-reaching effects of domestic violence on children. Researchers discovered children who simply witness abuse suffer the same effects as those who are actually abused. Observing violence carries the same risk of harm to a child’s mental health and learning as a child who is abused directly. Ronald Kessler, the lead researcher and professor at Harvard Medical School says these effects last well into adulthood. Among childhood adversities those involving family violence inflict the worst long-term effects.