[deleted account] ( 17 moms have responded )
The subject was closed. I assume their were some vitriolic posts both pro and anti - spanking agenda.
First off, I taught elementary for 16 years and studied post graduate child psychology for 4. So I am going to try to come from a solid educated opinion rather than how much this kind of post sickens me. Kudos to all you who pulled up the laptop with a bowl full of popcorn and kept your 'mouths closed'. Wish I could.
Secondly, I wonder - how many of you - pro or anti - have actually studied early child psychology and the basis or history of what we call early child psychology today. My guess is that you have very strong feelings toward what FEELS right FOR YOU. Unfortunately you are turning your feelings against your community and that it wrong.
Before I get into this, I wish we as a society could really get a few distinctions down. True conversations or arguments are for the betterment of all, not for the elimination of most and the exaltation of a few as we see in TVs so-called reality shows. And we, as women - especially as mothers - will never see a world for us, our daughters, or our daughters' daughters that is truly an equal world until we can learn to get past all of our passive aggressive manipulative BS and discuss issues and disagreements in a cooperative manner.
So saying, I can only share my personal experience and my life's view as a result of who I am through time. I hope you disagree. I hope you find your own patterns and way of doing things because a homogenous culture is a sick culture.
So here's my story. Two years, and almost four months ago, I delivered by natural birth the most beautiful baby in the world. As did most of you when you had your own. Could I conceive at that time that I would spank my child?! Ever?! Certainly not. I will do anything necessary for my child. But that beautiful little girl got bigger. And bigger. When she was 4.5 months she weighed 25 pounds and we could not find her original chin, ankles or wrists. She was still adorable and wonderful and did I mention miraculous? At eight months, 30 lbs and 30 inches tall - she was walking, talking (babbling) ,extremely intelligent, engaging, and loving. Could I conceive of spanking her in the future? Certainly not my beautiful girl.I would and will do anything necessary for my child.
At one year, I gave her a little tap. It broke my heart. It went against all my training and I cried my heart out to my pediatrician who cradled my sobs and gave me kudos for working on actually disciplining my child, bless her. But I delivered that tap because she was manhandling a pet and would not stop or be distracted. Did I mention how physically and willfully strong my baby is? Well she is.
And since then, a spanking which consists on a varying amount of force delivered ONLY to her diaper/training pants ensconced bottom.
Does it hurt her feelings? Does it make me feel like a lousy mother? Does it work? You bet.
Yes. Spanking a child should be a stop-gap measure. The child is in danger. The child is placing someone (or a pet) else in danger. OR the child is a leader who must learn to slow down and follow first. Should a child smaller than an average two year old be spanked. I don't know. The experts say no. Yes. When I spank I feel like hell and I should feel like hell. Feeling like hell is a natural emotional reaction. If I felt joyful, vindictive or nothing, that would make me a psycopath!
And the experts. Toddler years, the schools, the counselors....yes learn from them. But they are going to teach you what is IDEAL not what is REAL about parenting. I've seen published and proven behavioral theories disproved in one clinical class! I know that most of us who are geared to counseling and psychology as a profession are awakened through our training to all our own issues. This is good, because we can consciously avoid trying to project our problems onto another. But, as you know if you are truly a humane human, it is VERY VERY difficult - like Ghandi difficult - to avoid projection one hundred percent of the time. From this I have learned to truly look at my counselors and understand that they are human. They mean well, but what informs their opinion? Here's something out of left field: Could our past 20 years of a societal 'no spank' movement be due to a group of psych majors who were beaten and in turn were trying to keep children from being beaten muchless spanked? Its hard to tell. Snowballs become avalanches very easily.
Are you disciplining your child without spanking and its working? Wonderful. Good parenting! Fabulous and I hope I and others like me learn from you. But then again, maybe you are lucky. Life may have presented you with a biddable child who has very early reasoning skills. Are you being truly honest with yourself about the amount of discipline your child is receiving and how much infuence you have on his/her formational behaviors? Who knows? Only you.
And on the spankers side; Are you disciplining your child with spanking and its working? Wonderful. Good parenting? Fabulous and I hope I and others like me learn from you. But then again, maybe you are spanking out of anger, laziness, or ignorance. Are you being truly honest with yourself about the amount of discipline your child is receiving and how much infuence you have on his/her formational behaviors? Who knows? Only you. And this is my point, ladies. Unless we can pay somewhat objective attention 100% to our own child rearing practices and at least a few other moms, 24/7 for at least a few months, taking into consideration each individual child's needs and personhood - which is IMPOSSIBLE - there is no WAY you can judge another mother as right or wrong for something as TRIVIAL as spanking or not spanking.
Can't we just pat the poor wretch, who confessed to spanking her child on another post and hurting about it, on the back and tell her its going to be all right? She cares about it so that alone makes her a good mom with lots of potential? Is it really that difficult to stand by each other and agree to disagree but to support each other all the same? Ladies? If we can't our society is going down the tubes.