On the basis of statistical analysis it is determined that today attitude to children in the family includes not only respect for their legitimate rights, freedoms and interests, but also a clear understanding of the role of each member of society in preventing cases of cruelties against children, taking into account the importance of various factors of child development (biological, psychological, economic, social, etc.), establishing the liability of family and society to create conditions for harmonious and safe environment in which a child lives and develops. The author analyzes the concept of "child abuse in the family" and defines it as the behavior of parents, relatives (or persons in loco parentis) of a child, which is characterized by damage to physical, psychological, moral, spiritual and other health of the child, violation of rights, freedoms and interests, obstruction of comprehensive development, intentional (or unintentional) creation of a negative climate in the family, deprivation of a child of proper care, support and protection. The article also notes the main causes of problems in the society: unemployment or low material security of the family; alcoholism of one or both parents; loneliness or marriage that broke up; a small residential space, which increases tension; parents' frustration or anger in the life; physical or mental fatigue; immaturity of parents; selfishness of parents, their desire for entertainment; lack of attachment to the child; excessive demands; birth of the second child; a large number of children; an unwanted child (as an excuse to a marriage); a prematurely born child in marriage, which allows an occasion to quarrels and divorce; a child with physical and mental disabilities, whom they want to get rid of because of the condemnation of others. The author concludes that every cruel act or omission of an adult carries consequences for the children, which are usually heavy, both physically and psychologically, and are often fatal. The cruelty of parents to children is an interdisciplinary problem, and therefore requires further studies of socio-pedagogical features, characteristics and ways to overcome this problem.