To spank or not to spank

Lola - posted on 12/02/2008 ( 242 moms have responded )

38

0

2

Upon reviewing some of the questions and replies to the questions I found it interesting to see the underlying debate about whether parents should spank their children or not. There are very strong feelings for both sides. I was raised by the belt and it worked. I dreaded getting in trouble and I greatly appreciate dicipline when I got out of line. When we were older, my mother joined a group called "tough love" which only seem to make things worse. They told her to stop spanking and start grounding or do time outs and such. When this happend I notice a VERY different behavior in my siblilngs (3) and I. I felt like I was getting off easy and rebelled a lot more. I do belive in spanking, however, there are certain circumstances that it should not be done, such as when you are angry-never hit out of anger that teaches a child to hit when angry. I explain the difference between a bad consequence for actions and hitting out of anger to my oldest, he grasps this very well, and so did I when I was younger. There also needs to be some constent boundaries and rules, if I do this, I get this as a consequence. It should never be left to whatever mood the parent is in at the moment. People are telling me spanking is wrong, although it isn't the majority of the parents I talk to. I just look at how things are going in the world today and see that the dicipline of old is being lost and i think it shows in how peopel behave today but that is a whole new topic anyway, I thought I would get some opinions on this topic.

This conversation has been closed to further comments

242 Comments

View replies by

Lola - posted on 01/09/2009

38

0

2

Thank you everyone for your great responses. I didn't expect so many people to respond. It was a very interesting to see other people's take on this topic. Good luck to all of you.

Lola - posted on 01/09/2009

38

0

2

Thank you everyone for your great responses. I didn't expect so many people to respond. It was a very interesting to see other people's take on this topic. Good luck to all of you.

Maryann - posted on 01/09/2009

2

11

0

act of violence ... i have seen different ways of discipline in action and i know with my children that the act of violence was not needed but a few times and then they new what was coming when they didnt listen. I only smacked if what they where doing would cause harm and I find it funny that even the children that wernt smacked proformed acts of violence against others. I dont think it is an act of voilence to teach your children to not do things that are harmful to themselves and or others> And I have seen the way some of the children that have been alternatively taught behave. Maybe smacking ( and i mean smacking not doing physical harm to children. And before you say it most ppl smack on the bottom covered by a nappy and the disciple is more the noise then the hurt) maybe it isnt the best way to go but there is not a lot of training in other mettods out there. Looking at the behavior of some of the children that arnt smacked i think i will stick with what I know. My children are well mannered, not angels but have the respect lacking in so many other children these days. Smacking is not an act of violence it is a act of love that teaches my children the rules of society and how it expects them to behave within it. I teach them that love is a combination of lots of love and kisses but also lots of rules that are enforced if broken. When they grow up the final act of bad behaviour is a time out in the big house.

Angela - posted on 01/08/2009

2

3

0

Quoting Shawna:



My 2 teenagers have never been spanked, punished by loosing something but never spanked and they have been able to grow up with out being out of control...SPanking tedlss the child that it is okay to hit when you are mad, that in order to get behavior that you want is to hit and I dont think that is what we need to show our children





 

Angela - posted on 01/08/2009

2

3

0

Quoting Shawna:



My 2 teenagers have never been spanked, punished by loosing something but never spanked and they have been able to grow up with out being out of control...SPanking tedlss the child that it is okay to hit when you are mad, that in order to get behavior that you want is to hit and I dont think that is what we need to show our children





 

User - posted on 01/08/2009

2

13

0

My 2 teenagers have never been spanked, punished by loosing something but never spanked and they have been able to grow up with out being out of control...SPanking tedlss the child that it is okay to hit when you are mad, that in order to get behavior that you want is to hit and I dont think that is what we need to show our children

Gwendolyn - posted on 01/07/2009

1

12

0

I feel that alot of you guys have the wrong idea concerning spanking a child and abuse for one abuse is when you or anyone strike a child out of anger with a fist, a bat, a stick, or any blunt object that cause broken bones, fractures. Where as a spanking takes on a different meaning my mom spanked me and my sibling Thank God she did because none of has never been in jail we don't have a criminal background most of us are in the church it didn't kill us just made us better peoples. You just don't hit a child you explain to them what it is that they have done and the severity of it and that it is unacceptable. Bottom line the Bible state that to spare the rod is to spoil the child.

Lori - posted on 01/07/2009

2

18

1

You put it very well.  Don't spank when angry.  Spank only for certain "offenses".  Teach & use discipline - not punishment.  Sounds like you are a pretty level-headed and have not only researched but experienced both sides.  Thank you for your insights.

Serena - posted on 01/07/2009

1

2

0

I do need to laugh when I hear poeple call a spanking "violent".  You know, when your child touches the stove when it is still hot, we don't scold the stove by telling it to stop being violent to our child, the stove was hot and now your child has learned a very valuble lesson.  As does he/she learn a valuble lesson with a spanken.  For all you know, a spanken would have prevented that burn from the stove, or perhaps getting hit by a car when running towards the road.  I love my children more than anything, and that is why I spank them, to protect them from physical harm, and to raise them with a good attitude, who wants there children to grow up to be little asses!!!!

Adeline - posted on 01/07/2009

5

2

1

God is a loving God yet He does use the rod. Read the famous Psalm 23...Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me....  I say that there are many ways to discipline and teach your child/children. Spanking is the the primary way of discipline.



I disagree with Tracy that spanking cannot be done "when they are in a reasonable, calm, rational and loving state of mind" Perhaps you are unable to but it doesn't mean that it is not possible. Love is not only cuddling.




I think that the word spanking (for some people here) is over magnified. If anyone wants to connect it to hitting, than it is their definition but as far as I am concerned it is NON violent. Perhaps that's why spanking is only done when in a rational state of mind. If you are upset then you will not be able to spank consciously.



/* Style Definitions */

table.MsoNormalTable

{mso-style-name:"Table Normal";

mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0;

mso-tstyle-colband-size:0;

mso-style-noshow:yes;

mso-style-parent:"";

mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt;

mso-para-margin:0cm;

mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt;

mso-pagination:widow-orphan;

font-size:10.0pt;

font-family:"Times New Roman";

mso-ansi-language:#0400;

mso-fareast-language:#0400;

mso-bidi-language:#0400;}



The bible does stress that we do not grieve our children - Lamentations 3:33 "For he doth not afflict willingly nor grieve the children of men."



Whichever is preferred, it must be done first and foremost consciously and out of love. If one is really upset, then one should take time out before anything.



 

[deleted account]

Quoting Chrystie:




I'd be interested to know more around the resurch that was done on spankings, b/c in my household it is quite the opposite.





Research has shown time and time again that spanking is only effective in the early years and that it escalates with the child's age. My 3 sibblings and I were raised in a 'spanking' household, yet 2 of us rebelled and 2 of us didn't.  We were disciplined consistently.  I truly believe that teenagers or even preens rebell mainly due to their personality traits and environment, not because of the way they were raised.  Spanking is merely a 'contributing factor' in a child's development, not the 'cause' for their behaviours.  There is a leading research group from 'Duluth Institute' that has tons of info on this. You sound like a very loving mother, and like all of us, we do the best we can, the best we 'know how' to ensure the wellfare of our children.  We just use different methods that best suits our needs and our child's needs. 

Vicky - posted on 01/07/2009

7

11

1

i do belive a good spank on the back off the legs sghould be ok but after everything ells has feaild, i have a 3 year old who has behaviale problems so he gets bored easly its ok if you can spend time with them but now and then when he dont wanna be good i end up tapping his legs i do belive in rewarding him more then teling him off

Cathie - posted on 01/07/2009

4

6

0

My mother was abused when she was a child and therefore did not condone or practise smacking when I was growing up. I have never even thought to lift a finger to my daughters and to be honest, never felt the need to. Could we tell our children its wrong to smack when we do it ourselves? - Practise what you preach. There are other ways of dealing with our anger - walk away, then come back and talk, I am by no means strict but my daughters act perfectly in and out of company, they know right from wrong and I am very proud of them. 

Chrystie - posted on 01/07/2009

17

17

0

Quoting Elizabeth:

Thank you Rebecca for your insightful point of view! I have come to the same conclusion upon reading numerous studies on the subject. Kids 'misbehave' because they are either bored or they are trying to figure out the world around them! Research has shown time and time again that spanking increases with the child's age. What will a parent of a rebellious 15 year old do? Will a 'soft loving tap' on the bum do the job? Spanking is a short solution that will in turn cause long term problems. When I became a parent, I read many unbiased 'research' documents at the local university. I have still to read one that reinforces spanking! We can go around in circles with the subject because it is all a matter of choice! I openly choose to give my 3.5 choices for his behaviour (ex: we just went to a doctor's appointment and he refused to sit on the examination table..so I asked him "Would you rather get up on the table by yourself, or have mommy help you?) The matter of fact is that I didn't actually give him a choice, but in turn he felt empowered by having a choice. He decided to get on the table by himself. It has worked wonderfully in teaching him how to share, how to respect others and do what he is supposed to be doing. Parenting is the hardest job in the world, and I am sure that no one loves our kids more than ourselves. I use these 'difficult' moments to teach my children life long lessons...and if I keep him occupied with crafts, or simly by helping me around the house...I notice that he does not get into trouble and is eager to help! To each its own!


"Research has shown time and time again that spanking increases with the child's age. What will a parent of a rebellious 15 year old do?"



I'd be interested to know more around the resurch that was done on spankings, b/c in my household it is quite the opposite. My oldest who is 10 1/2 almost never gets a spanking anymore, partly b/c I think she's at the age where she shouldn't be getting spankings any more, but mostly b/c she doesn't need them any more. She rarely does anything worth a spanking any more, she probably recieved 1 in the last year. I will now give her a loss of privladge or an extra chore. Spanking has to do with shaping your child. But spanking alone won't do anythig if it's not followed up by talking about what the child did wrong & talking about what the better choice would have been. As well as giving them a hug & letting them know you love them no matter what choices they make in life. And that you only spank them to teach them not to make the same choice. It should be hard for the parent b/c it's not fun, I've been fighting tears before giving spanking & esspecially having the heart to heart talks afterwords about the choice they made & how much I love them. There should never be a bruse or welt from a spanking. It should be like if someone whips a towel at your bottom. It may be red & sting for a bit, but not leave a mark. It's not the only way to discipline, I think you need variety. Diferent bad choises deserve different disciplines. My point in stating all this is, the idea is not to need to spank more as they get older, the goal is to spank less, until you stop & use different forms of punishment. Spankings are meant for the formative years. If you discipline consistantly in the early years, no matter what kind of discipline you use, you shouldn't have to discipline very much in the later years. So far I have found that to be true. If you have a rebellious teenager, then they were not disciplined consistantly, which lead them to bellive they could get away w/things & they ran w/it as they got older. If they are trained from the beggining that you are consistant at not letting them get away w/wrong behavior, what would be the point of testing it to the point of rebellion. They'd be grounded before they had a chance to get to that point! :)

Chrystie - posted on 01/07/2009

17

17

0

Quoting Rupa:

I am so glad to hear that so many of you parents are against spanking, aka physical violence, because one day your kids will be going to school with my child, and I m glad that everyone will be in a safe enviroment. as far as the ones that do spank if you look at the physical abuse cycle you will find that physical abuse is a cycle, you learned it from your parents. You dont know how else to respond to your child so you hit. why not STOP, and learn how to effectively respond to their needs. negative attention is still attention, so if you are gonna put so much effort in something why not put it in the positive, other wise all you are teaching your child is, when they need attention, they have to be disobediant. as far as the fear aspect of it, i totally agree your kids should never know whats the end will be. They should always fear the unexpected, but they should never see it.


"I am so glad to hear that so many of you parents are against spanking, aka physical violence, because one day your kids will be going to school with my child" WOW! OUCH! Talk about straight out attaking people! Do you belive in the bible? To chastize or to spank is a biblical principal. Jesus was known for loving his children, why would I want anything different then you?? I LOVE my children & would do anything for them, including disciplining them with whatever form of discipline best fits what they have done wrong. I don't spank my 4 kids nor does my husband for fun or for no reason. We do it for the same reason as anyone disciplines. Spanking does not involve anything that leaves a bruise, mark or scar or your right it would be abuse. It is simmalar to if someone snaped a towell at your behind swiftly. It's a quick sting to get the point accross, just like a time out or loss of privalage. The point is to learn a lesson & also to talk to them about it w/love & guide them in the right dirrection. I am VERY offended that you would make a blanket statement "as far as the ones that do spank if you look at the physical abuse cycle you will find that physical abuse is a cycle, you learned it from your parents." again, WOW! You are right I did learn it from my parents, but I'm sorry it was not abuse. I was only spanked 2-3 times ever, I hardley call that abuse! I call that I made a few really bad choices, that my parents felt needed spanking to correct & I never made those choices again, thanks to my parents loving guidence. I'm not sure how you are steriotyping & mixing spanking with abuse? As far as I know when people are being physically abusive, they don't stop at the bottom, they hit anyware they please. This is not at all what spanking for a discipline is about! My oldest is 10 & I have twins that are 8, my youngest is 4. My youngest hasn't started school yet. My oldest 3 have been called by their teachers to my face role model students, every single year. Do you think a teacher would tell me that if they were bullys abusive somehow?? I have also gotten endless reports from all different people that my children are very polite & well behaved. They have even been compared to other children on many occations as to how much better they are behaved. This tells me we are doing something right, not wrong. If we were spanking our children & not seeing any good results from it, then there would be no reason to do it. On the contrary, our children behave very well due to spanking & other forms of discipline. The main thing is the teaching & guiding that folows any discipline, not just the punishment. I do not think it is fair to come on here & outrightly attack what someone elses view is. Everyone has thier own oppinion & a right to explain their own why.  No one has the right to decide for others what is right or wrong.

Chrystie - posted on 01/07/2009

17

17

0

Quoting Jocelyn:

The only thing kids learn from spanking is to hit. If you watch small children play, if they are spanked they will also spank their dolls. I have never spanked my kids. I do discipline them. There are consequenses for their actions. They also learn by example and we do lots of volunteer work. Also not doing something wrong out of fear of being spanked does not teach right from wrong. As far as school goes they are also excellently behaved. (2nd and 4th grade) There is consistency there as well (very important for kids). And always follow through on your word! If you say you will do something then do it or your kids will not believe you. We count to 3 and then follow through on whatever we said we would do and now I only get to one before they comply.


Jocelyn, I was spanked growing up & I feel it helped shape me into the person I am today. I am not scared from it in any way & I have never hit anyone in my life. Not even my siblings. I have 4 children ages 10, twins age 8 & 4. We have diciplined all our children the same, including time outs, loss of privledge, extra chore & spankings. None of our children have been scared from any form of our disciplines, but they are shaped by them. Just like your children. We have found that there are certain issues that come up where spanking is the best fit for the "crime" & other times where a time out is fine. However we've also found different children need different forms of discipline, they don't all respond to the same disciplines in the same way. For exapmple, my 4 year old daughter does not do time outs well at all, she disobeys the whole time she's in one. However if I isolate her in a room or spank her it works much better for her b/c she can't seam to sit still & be quiet in a time out, she's far to ancy. You said "not doing something wrong out of fear of being spanked does not teach right from wrong." I'm not sure how that's any different from any other punishment?? You could just as easily say, not doing something wrong out of fear of loosing a privaledge does not teach right from wrong. I think that's the goal of any for of discipline, to teach your children right from wrong. If it's not, then why do we put them in a time out or what ever? Just to pay for what they've done & learn nothing from it? What good would that do, why would they change? There needs to be more to any form of discipline then just the punishment, there's also the teaching part of it. Which I'm sure you do as well, it sounds like you have well behaved children. I'm assuming it's b/c of the the teaching part you must also do where you talk to them about what they did, why it's not ok & tell them you are imperfect just like them & make mistakes and bad choices sometimes too. But that you will always love them no matter what choices they make in life, just like our children love us, even though we make mistakes.  You also mentiond that children who are disciplined with spankings learn to hit.  None of my children have ever hit or spanked anyone except their siblings from time to time, but that is normal wheather you spank or not.  Are you telling me your children have never fought or argued? I don't agree  that if a child is spanked that means they will learn to hit others b/c I think of spanking as a form of discipline, not abuse. I have no interest in teaching my children to hit anyone, as a matter a fact, they are disciplined if they do anything to harm their siblings. Even if it's an accident they are expected to hug the person they hurt & say sorry nicely.  My chldren are all loving tender kids, who deeply care about others. They have not been hurt or wonded in some way by us spanking them. I think people get this false image in thier mind that the children are being abused somehow. I'm sure that's the case in some situations, but that's not using a spanking in the right way if it's abusive. There should never be a bruse from a spanking or it was administered too hard.That's why you give a spanking on the rear end it has the most pading. It's not intended to do damage, it's intended to sting for a few moments to remind you the choice you made was a choice you don't want to repeat. It's not much differnt then if someone snaps a towel at your rear end firmly.  You said if you watch small children who are spanked play, they spank thier dolls.  I'm not sure where you baised this information off of?  Anyhow, what does it hurt a doll to be spanked? I see kids throw their dolls & annimals on the floor & kick them ect. does that mean that happens to them at home or that they are angry or hurt children?? Any child can hit, not only children who are spanked. That's more a defiance issue, then a spank issue. I don't expect you to convert to spanking for discipline & I'm not trying to push my opinion on you. I just hope to put spanking for discipline in a different light for you. I don't think any less of people that don't spank & I would hope you & other's could feel the same way. Everyone has their own opinon baised on their own life & upbringing. No one should be out to change anyones mind b/c no one is going to. Just simply to state thier side & follow it with a why. :)

Chrystie - posted on 01/07/2009

17

17

0

Quoting Jocelyn:

The only thing kids learn from spanking is to hit. If you watch small children play, if they are spanked they will also spank their dolls. I have never spanked my kids. I do discipline them. There are consequenses for their actions. They also learn by example and we do lots of volunteer work. Also not doing something wrong out of fear of being spanked does not teach right from wrong. As far as school goes they are also excellently behaved. (2nd and 4th grade) There is consistency there as well (very important for kids). And always follow through on your word! If you say you will do something then do it or your kids will not believe you. We count to 3 and then follow through on whatever we said we would do and now I only get to one before they comply.


Jocelyn, I was spanked growing up & I feel it helped shape me into the person I am today. I am not scared from it in any way & I have never hit anyone in my life. Not even my siblings. I have 4 children ages 10, twins age 8 & 4. We have diciplined all our children the same, including time outs, loss of privledge, extra chore & spankings. None of our children have been scared from any form of our disciplines, but they are shaped by them. Just like your children. We have found that there are certain issues that come up where spanking is the best fit for the "crime" & other times where a time out is fine. However we've also found different children need different forms of discipline, they don't all respond to the same disciplines in the same way. For exapmple, my 4 year old daughter does not do time outs well at all, she disobeys the whole time she's in one. However if I isolate her in a room or spank her it works much better for her b/c she can't seam to sit still & be quiet in a time out, she's far to ancy. You said "not doing something wrong out of fear of being spanked does not teach right from wrong." I'm not sure how that's any different from any other punishment?? You could just as easily say, not doing something wrong out of fear of loosing a privaledge does not teach right from wrong. I think that's the goal of any for of discipline, to teach your children right from wrong. If it's not, then why do we put them in a time out or what ever? Just to pay for what they've done & learn nothing from it? What good would that do, why would they change? There needs to be more to any form of discipline then just the punishment, there's also the teaching part of it. Which I'm sure you do as well, it sounds like you have well behaved children. I'm assuming it's b/c of the the teaching part you must also do where you talk to them about what they did, why it's not ok & tell them you are imperfect just like them & make mistakes and bad choices sometimes too. But that you will always love them no matter what choices they make in life, just like our children love us, even though we make mistakes.  You also mentiond that children who are disciplined with spankings learn to hit.  None of my children have ever hit or spanked anyone except their siblings from time to time, but that is normal wheather you spank or not.  Are you telling me your children have never fought or argued? I don't agree  that if a child is spanked that means they will learn to hit others b/c I think of spanking as a form of discipline, not abuse. I have no interest in teaching my children to hit anyone, as a matter a fact, they are disciplined if they do anything to harm their siblings. Even if it's an accident they are expected to hug the person they hurt & say sorry nicely.  My chldren are all loving tender kids, who deeply care about others. They have not been hurt or wonded in some way by us spanking them. I think people get this false image in thier mind that the children are being abused somehow. I'm sure that's the case in some situations, but that's not using a spanking in the right way if it's abusive. There should never be a bruse from a spanking or it was administered too hard.That's why you give a spanking on the rear end it has the most pading. It's not intended to do damage, it's intended to sting for a few moments to remind you the choice you made was a choice you don't want to repeat. It's not much differnt then if someone snaps a towel at your rear end firmly.  You said if you watch small children who are spanked play, they spank thier dolls.  I'm not sure where you baised this information off of?  Anyhow, what does it hurt a doll to be spanked? I see kids throw their dolls & annimals on the floor & kick them ect. does that mean that happens to them at home or that they are angry or hurt children?? Any child can hit, not only children who are spanked. That's more a defiance issue, then a spank issue. I don't expect you to convert to spanking for discipline & I'm not trying to push my opinion on you. I just hope to put spanking for discipline in a different light for you. I don't think any less of people that don't spank & I would hope you & other's could feel the same way. Everyone has their own opinon baised on their own life & upbringing. No one should be out to change anyones mind b/c no one is going to. Just simply to state thier side & follow it with a why. :)

Amanda - posted on 01/07/2009

3

10

0

Thank you for pointing out something very important. I am a single mom with 3 kids, ages 2; 4; 7. I always get angry and then give hidings to out my anger, but after reading your post I will change my way of punishment.

Dorothy - posted on 01/06/2009

19

12

1

My daughter is only 17  months old, and I spank her hands when she is doing something wrong. When I was over the age of 13, I cannot even remember getting a spanking; that's because my parents put the fear of God in me, and no spankings were needed after that...lol!!! :o)

Dorothy - posted on 01/06/2009

19

12

1

My daughter is only 17  months old, and I spank her hands when she is doing something wrong. When I was over the age of 13, I cannot even remember getting a spanking; that's because my parents put the fear of God in me, and no spankings were needed after that...lol!!! :o)

Nancy - posted on 01/06/2009

34

9

8

I was spanked only for the most serious of offences, and had a great day of respect for my parents... who really didn't sweat the small stuff in life. (the one & only spanking i really recall getting was after running my Dad's brand new car into the garage at age 5 -- we had been told NOT to play in the car and well.. we did... and it was a standard and we knocked it into neutrul and it rolled down the drive)..



I have "spanked" my child a few times. That is.. when the warnings, the timeouts & the removal of privlidges didn't work, or when what she did was dangerous (if you step down onto the road after mommy said not to you WILL get a spanking).



I have respect for her, and she for me. Do I abuse my child ? Heavens no.. many would probably say she is spoiled rotten... with love.



On the occassions she has been spanked - it was after numerous warnings, and I have sent her to her room and told her that Mommy will be up in a few minutes. We talk about what she has done wrong, why I feel that a spanking is in order, and she gets a whack on the bottom (which hurts my heart and my hand more than it hurts her bottom). Afterwards we talk about it again, and we hug. I explain to her why I felt it necessary for this to happen.



In the case of her walking off the curb onto the street it was when she was younger and thought it a fun game to have mommy say no & remove her, put her on the step on a time out and as soon as I moved she would run back out to the curb.  Living on a street with a lot of big traffic (Ambulance, fire trucks, and the emergency response people travelling on it) does not allow for a "fun" side of the street manerisim.. I needed her to know that stepping down onto the street without a grownup with her was NOT an option she was allowed to do.



I realize that I am not a perfect person, and far from being a perfect parent... but I also see the lack of respect that many young people have today.. and I don't want my daughter to grow up like that. She is being taught discipline, respect, and that there are consquences for your actions... some good (movie nights, make overs, new books etc,) and some bad - loss of priviledges, groundings, and even a spanking.



I haven't spanked my daughter in over 3 years... and I honestly hope I never have to again.. These days... the look is normally enough...



Do some parents spank too much or to hard?? i'm sure they do... i wasn't one of those parents... everyone has their own methods of discipline... i don't agree with them all... just as i'm sure a lot of parents don't agree with mine...



 



Good topic of conversation by the way :)

[deleted account]

We do not and will not spank.



 



I have to say that the biblical issues are rather disturbing to me. Hearing this information makes me even happier to not be even remotely religious.



 



I'm also bothered by the comment that we moms of young babies will change our tune once our kids are older and misbehaving more. I have to politely disagree with you--I am very opposed to spanking. I consider it harsh, cruel and demeaning, no matter the situation. These beliefs are important to me.



 



I also don't understand how spanking works to TEACH a child (because that IS the point of "discipline) to stop a certain behavior...unless fear and pain are good motivation. I was spanked, and I also have trouble believing it can be done without anger. You're hitting a child...how can that be done in good mind?! I love my son, I respect him as a person. His feelings, emotions and opinions are important to me. If I want him to stop something or to understand something, I can talk, reason, explain, show or model for him the correct way to go about things.

[deleted account]

We do not and will not spank.



 



I have to say that the biblical issues are rather disturbing to me. Hearing this information makes me even happier to not be even remotely religious.



 



I'm also bothered by the comment that we moms of young babies will change our tune once our kids are older and misbehaving more. I have to politely disagree with you--I am very opposed to spanking. I consider it harsh, cruel and demeaning, no matter the situation. These beliefs are important to me.



 



I also don't understand how spanking works to TEACH a child (because that IS the point of "discipline) to stop a certain behavior...unless fear and pain are good motivation. I was spanked, and I also have trouble believing it can be done without anger. You're hitting a child...how can that be done in good mind?! I love my son, I respect him as a person. His feelings, emotions and opinions are important to me. If I want him to stop something or to understand something, I can talk, reason, explain, show or model for him the correct way to go about things.

[deleted account]

We do not and will not spank.



 



I have to say that the biblical issues are rather disturbing to me. Hearing this information makes me even happier to not be even remotely religious.



 



I'm also bothered by the comment that we moms of young babies will change our tune once our kids are older and misbehaving more. I have to politely disagree with you--I am very opposed to spanking. I consider it harsh, cruel and demeaning, no matter the situation. These beliefs are important to me.



 



I also don't understand how spanking works to TEACH a child (because that IS the point of "discipline) to stop a certain behavior...unless fear and pain are good motivation. I was spanked, and I also have trouble believing it can be done without anger. You're hitting a child...how can that be done in good mind?! I love my son, I respect him as a person. His feelings, emotions and opinions are important to me. If I want him to stop something or to understand something, I can talk, reason, explain, show or model for him the correct way to go about things.

[deleted account]

We do not and will not spank.



 



I have to say that the biblical issues are rather disturbing to me. Hearing this information makes me even happier to not be even remotely religious.



 



I'm also bothered by the comment that we moms of young babies will change our tune once our kids are older and misbehaving more. I have to politely disagree with you--I am very opposed to spanking. I consider it harsh, cruel and demeaning, no matter the situation. These beliefs are important to me.



 



I also don't understand how spanking works to TEACH a child (because that IS the point of "discipline) to stop a certain behavior...unless fear and pain are good motivation. I was spanked, and I also have trouble believing it can be done without anger. You're hitting a child...how can that be done in good mind?! I love my son, I respect him as a person. His feelings, emotions and opinions are important to me. If I want him to stop something or to understand something, I can talk, reason, explain, show or model for him the correct way to go about things.

Michelle - posted on 01/06/2009

29

29

3

i personally dont believe in spanking, and was spankled as a child. Yes it work, and if they had changed their strategy in the middle of childhood i would have started doing things i should bnot have as well, becuase the threat is gone. But i also know that my step kids were raised not being spanked, but they hate to disappointe their parents, and are very well behaved. So in the end, i dont think there is a right or wrong answer, to each their own, and i agree that they should never be hit in anger, that is the worst thing that any paent can do. if you are going to spank, send them to their room until you calm down, then go in there. Has a double benefit of them thinking about what they did.

Venessa - posted on 01/06/2009

26

17

2

I was a child that got the living daylights beaten out of me. I'm not against spanking but only if nothing else worked. if all other options are exhausted then maybe a spanking is warranted. it should only be use in drastic situations where what the child continues to do is a danger to themselves or other.using object to hit your child is not spanking them. Explain to the child that you did not want to have to spank them but because of their behavior it was unfortunately necessary. There is a major difference between spanking and beating your child.

User - posted on 01/06/2009

1

15

0

I'm a mom of 3. I found that kids certainly test boundaries. I believe in capital punishment in my home, but only under specific circumstances.
1. It is 1st taught wanted behavior. Whent teaching a child not to interrupt or whatever, it is spoken and told desired behavior. Reminders are needed for sometime with rewards for good behavior in the area. Stickers, etc.. When behavior returns warning, then a consequence (timeout, separation, duties) then after learned behavior is seen and consisitent, THEN and only when absolute DEFYANCE is displayed..( Such as NO, or something like that)
I believe that when all these steps are taken consistently, then spanking becomes extremely rare. Punishment fits the crime. It goes for many ages. a 2 year old can't do duties, but understands separation, and a teen understands loss of money when jobs don't get done and another person has to do theri job, like a sibling. They listen real quick!!

Heather - posted on 01/06/2009

1

24

0

Well I personally believe in the King James version of the Bible and God says "SPARE THE ROD SPOIL THE CHILD" so I do believe in spanking. There is a difference in beating and spanking. Although every child is different so something besides spanking may work better. I have 2 boys and they are as different as night and day, what works for one might not work for the other. Hope I helped.

Lola - posted on 01/06/2009

38

0

2

Rebecca,



 



Thank you for sharing your wonderful viewpoints. It was a good to read it When I started this thread I did realize that everyone will not agree and will see it differently and that is okay. No one is the same, and thank you for not sounding demeaning to others in your reply. . From your quote, how can we teach children that violence is wrong if we use it” the main point here is that people who spank, including myself, don’t see spanking as violent. There is a difference between beating and giving a quick swat on the bottom, and secondly, we don’t spank for every infraction. I am not teaching my child violence is okay. There is a huge difference between spanking and violence (I am speaking of when done properly and not crossing the line to abusive I have posted about this earlier) He knows spanking is a form of negative consequences resulting from him showing bad behavior. When I use time outs and taking things from him he throws more temper tantrums and doesn’t see this as anything to worry about. When he gets into trouble I take the time to explain it to him about why he received the negative consequence that he did. Disciplining a child is never easy. I have experienced many tears and “mommy nos” and “I’m sorry” all in an effort to avoid the consequences that comes from his actions, but even though I feel sorry for him I know it is my job to correct him. I can’t just say it is okay and not give him the time out/spanking, etc because then he would learn how to get away with everything and he will keep doing the bad behavior. Disciplining isn’t something any parent does because they want to, but because they have to. For me there is also a huge difference between “consequences” and “punishment” (also in another post main difference being intent) When you are addressing a child’s behavior you are confronting them with it to make them aware of it and that it isn’t okay. So even choosing to give a child a time out instead of a spanking is still “confrontational punishment” as you have said. Taking a child aside and discussing it quietly always comes with the discipline. If you always “talk to the child” they learn you are a push over. (Again this is from my experience). I have tried to “talk with him” and he still kept on pushing the limits with no worries about facing the consequences of “talking with mommy” For me, this method alone hasn’t been very effective. Smacking isn’t an easy option. It isn’t one I ever enjoy doing, having to discipline my child is in no way easy for me.




You said you work with “consequences to your actions” and so do I. There are just many different ways to have consequences for actions. The main thing is that boundaries are laid out, he knows if he throws temper tantrums, he goes to his room, if he takes it further by kicking holes in walls he knows he gets spanked. It isn’t a surprise and it isn’t based on the whims of my emotions. If I do get frustrated at him for something he did, I send him to his room for both of us to calm down. There are many times, I have been so overwhelmed that I felt like screaming at him, so this is when I realize I am not in any state of mind to discipline him, so I need to cool down. You said “It doesn’t teach kids to really think though their actions” on the contrary it does. When I ask my son, now why did you just get spanked? He says “because I was naughty” and then I ask him “was that good or bad behavior” and he tells me “it was bad” so he does make the connection that his actions have consequences (which vary, same for time outs I ask him why he got the time out…etc) He has a choice: he can choose good or bad behavior and choose whether her gets good or bad consequences. Also, Just plan disciplining a child doesn’t teach them anything (no matter which form you use) without taking the time to walk him through the situation. The whole point is to teach him not to do what is on the “don’t do list”. Children also can’t grasp everything we can. We know from hind sight that things are bad, like eating to much candy for example. We know from experience this can make you sick and rot your teeth. So we teach our children to moderate what they eat and brush there teeth, I know my four year old doesn’t fully understand the “why” but he will. Just like when I discipline him, he will understand it more later when he looks back on it.

In response to your quote “I’ve never seen anyone one who WASN”T spanked as a child arguing that it’s a good idea” that is because they have no bases to make an argument. I have never cooked fish, so I don’t because I don’t know how. I have had no one teach me, and I don’t care to ever learn. This doesn’t mean that it is wrong or bad.



 



You also said “on the whole people say that my children are very well behaved, and very confident for their age.” So are my children. My son’s teachers are always telling me how well behaved he is. He is setting tables, picking up after himself, He knows how to share with the other children. It is always the other children that are hitting and biting and picking on the other kids (I get the little ouch reports from other kids throwing rocks at my son-who refrained from throwing rocks back by the way) so I know what I am doing is working.




You also said 'is it necessary?' no one person could really answer this question because everyone is different. I feel in some cases, yes it truly is. There have been points in time when I was growing up, it was the only way to reach me. My little sister used to press my buttons so much, I just wanted to hurt her any way I could, so my mom spanking me really got me thinking about what I was doing and helped me to calm down. There was even a time where the only thing she could do was sit on me to hold me down because I was so enraged I was latterly wanting to kill my sister. I know this isn’t my proudest moment, but I sure did learn from that experience. I could see jut how dangerous anger can be (I was also like 11 at the time). Some kids don’t respond to other methods. I hated getting in trouble so most of the time just a stern talking to would be enough. Some kids rebel and challenge and push the rules and learn that they can deal with “time outs” and getting privileges taken away” but they still act out. There is no one way to answer that question, now if you said is it necessary for every situation? Then no. There are times when Spanking isn’t appropriate and shouldn’t even been considered as the consequence. You mentioned trying other strategies, I do too. I don’t resort to spanking. Rather spanking is only one strategy I don’t use if the extreme bad  behavior doesn’t present itself.

I am not sure what you mean by “mentions a link with delinquent behavior and non-spanking” but the links I have used in other arguments are:



(For the discussion on consequences versus punishment and the intent behind each)



(used to for the interpretations of “sparing the rod”)



 



Other websites people brought up are:



).







I used them to explain my view point on the difference between consequences and punishment, and what logical and natural consequences are. You said “because anecdotal evidence of her own family is not enough” I ask you enough for what? I am not trying to change anyone’s mind and “convince them that my way is right” I am only drawing on my experience to help me raise my own children. Each of us a parents use what he have learned from the past to help us make decisions for raising our children, and it is enough for me to give me a guideline for raising my kids. I see what worked and what didn’t. My family experience help me learn. It is one main influence on my life and who I am as an adult and helped to shape me into who I am today, so yes I use that when I try to help shape my children into the person they will become. I am in no way expecting to use that to “get others” to do the same. It is impossible for any one person to think alike. We might agree on some things but no two people see every situation the same. We can take the same event and read it two different ways. I also do agree, spanking from my mom was a control mechanism because she didn’t know what else to do. She had tried grounding us and putting us on time outs when we were younger and yet nothing worked, and I can see that this was because we learned to deal with what ever consequence she gave out. She couldn’t however just sit there and let us get away with anything. My father, spanked too, and when he did it, we listened. The main reason why it would work for one is also due to the fact my father didn’t support her, she would say no, and we would run to him and he would say yes. I have learned from seeing this and know that parents need to be consistent and that spanking when you aren’t in control (as my mother often was caught up in emotions) isn’t okay.



You said “i have done a lot of reading on the subject, and have only come across numerous studies that link delinquent behavior with either neglectful or abusive parenting.” I agree, abusive and neglectful parenting is wrong. I don’t agree however that spanking in of itself is abusive. There is a bad side to everything. When parents abuse the power and cross the lines and start spanking out of anger then it is no longer discipline but punishment. This is bad. Another example, money, which is good in and of itself. You can use it to do some great things, but when you start to become greedy always wanting more, or you use it to try to control people, this is bad. It is no longer used in a good way.



 



I have never heard your take before in regards to the “spare the rod spoil the child” It is interesting that you see “spanking as spoiling the child because it teaches them to be fearful. I also differ that being fearful (again to some extent) is a bad thing. They should have some fear of disappointing a parent (I also discussed this earlier). I didn’t quite grasp how being “fearful” would lead a child to rebel against the parent. Could you elaborate more on what you meant by “smacked children are usually 'spoiled' in the sense of being fearful of authority figures or openly rebellious towards them, regardless of how much you escalate the smacking” I can’t see the point you are making. As far as “escalate the smacking” this is the point I am making, spanking shouldn’t be escalated. If the situation is escalating then there is an increase in emotions being escalated as well (ie getting angry and no longer being in control) and parents should never spank out of anger. It is then necessary for a cooling off period. You don’t just keep hitting harder and harder and harder. This is the line that shouldn’t be crossed. If you are getting more angry, or the child for that matter is to angry they need time to cool down before you go back to them and have the talk. You can’t reason when you are emotional.




I am interested to learn from the people who feel like spanking was an injustice if their parents took the time to sit with them and go over the events that led to the spanking. I have stated my viewpoints on this site for all to read, and part of my argument was that the people okay with spanking understood it was because of their actions. I am always open to a new learning experience. So if parents just disciplined without the sit down portion, is that why he felt threatened? Or was it that he was spanked, had the talk and still felt that way? That it was an exertion of power rather then a consequence for his actions?

You mentioned poly-households, I didn’t know what that was either, thanks for the explanation. In some ways, I am in the same sort of situation as far as being in a household where children are “parented”  by more then mom and dad. My life is in transition, currently we are living with my husbands parents while I go to bootcamp and await orders to get stationed somewhere. I had to move out of my previous residence so the owners could try to sell it. Anyway, If you read the posts before about my mother in law, she is a VERY dominate person so there are times where she will allow my son to do (or not do) something that doesn’t agree with me. So it can be hard having four people raise one child. I do teach my son however that he should respect adults and listen. We are a family and as such we look out for each other’s children and treat them as if they were our own.  
 



You also mentioned “that we don't actually know the long term affects of what you call 'non-violent spanking' and therefore we should not use it” I believe that I do know the effects of it. It is the abuse of the power that leads to the negativity. That is why I was curious to test my beliefs. I think the studies that others have mentioned are directed in the wrong place. I am wondering why people who were spanked feel that it is either ok or that it was a parent dominating the child.” There are other examples in our society of not knowing the full effect of something, yet we still do it. For example, giving our children medicines. There are always stories in the news or lawsuits pertaining to medicines doctors prescribe that were in fact more harmful then good. They were giving children anti-depressants and they found that it didn’t help with their depression, but made it worse. Parents gave them to the kids because the doctor said so. And it resulted in a lot of them committing suicide. The other point here, I would like to make is that we don’t know what effect we are having on children period. We aren’t them and can’t think the way they do or reason they way they do (we can only see things our way). So what is good for one might not be good for another. Trying to say because you don’t understand, we shouldn’t do it, seems like a weak argument to me because we can’t know how we impact people until much later in life. My son if four. I am worried that by choosing to join the military today will increase his wanting to join later. I will never know if the choice I made today will affect him later in life and shape how he lives. I won’t live in fear for “what could happen” this is why I draw on my life experiences to make the best choice I can make (I would prefer it to be informed, but sometimes you go on your instincts as parents because that is all you really have.



 



 Last point you brought up is “if it really doesn't hurt, then on what basis is it more effective than saying: Your behavior is making me really angry, stop doing that?” first, I don’t think a child should “stop doing that because it makes YOU angry” This is making it about emotion and is left on the spur of the moment. There is no logical reasoning. There are days when you can be quicker to anger then others and there is no line that a child would be able to recognize. Spanking is about boundaries. My spankings don’t hurt my son most of the time, because the intent isn’t to always hurt, but to let him know his bad behavior wasn’t okay. Bad behavior is harmful (this is why they shouldn’t do it, not because it makes you angry). It is a technique just like time outs. Sometimes getting a quick swat is enough to get them to say wait a minute. I shouldn’t have done that.



 



Sorry this is so long, I love being able to have these discussions so thank you for your time in reading it. And I am interested in hearing your reply.

Heather - posted on 01/06/2009

4

6

0

Spanking is wrong. It teaches nothing positive and a great deal that is negative. Getting hit as a consequence? Truly what are you teaching? The discipline of old taught kids to fear their kids and to use violence as a tool for solving problems. The vast majority of kids today are just fine, they just have different ideas and ways of doing things than we or our parents did

Michelle - posted on 01/06/2009

6

12

0

In reply to what form of discipline to choose with a rebellious teen (15 year old) - our personal belief is spanking after about 10 (depending on the child) is too late.  Once a human is capapble of abstract thought, reasoning with them is a WONDERFUL tool.  Also along the lines of Elizabeth's post, the teachings of 'Love and Logic' are very good tools for many situations (such as giving the child a choice that is only compliant with what is required at the time).  We employ this method effectively in our household - and our school system uses it as well, which provides a consistent means of teaching acceptable behavior.  HOWEVER - young children must be TAUGHT correct responses - as in how to handle disappointment, sadness, anger, even happiness (it's ok to be excited, but you can't run around shrieking right now).  When you 'disappoint' a child by telling them 'NO', they could care less if thier behavior makes you angry.  THEY are angry.  One of my sons cannot STAND to be sent to his room - he misses out on what everyone else is doing.  The other one can sit in a room and daydream....he could care less.  Room punishment works well for one.  Spanking works for the other.  Each child 'fears' something different.  Semantics seem to be a problem here as well.  'It doesn't hurt' should be qualified.  IT DOESN'T LEAVE A MARK AND CAUSE DAMAGE might be better.  Of course a swat hurts.  As adults we understand the difference between the word 'sting' and 'excruciating pain causing swelling/bleeding/bruising'.  My kids know that they will not be spanked at school...but also know that if they continue to exhibit poor behavior choices they will eventually be spanked at home.  The school knows this as well.  When we adopted these 3, we tried many methods with each of them before finding an appropriate set of actions - and adjust them as the children grow and change - but spanking was the best thing that ever happened to these kids.  Ask and of them what a spanking if for and you will hear "when we just won't follow the rules - it's a reminder".  That's our long term consequence; I'm all for it.

User - posted on 01/06/2009

7

8

0

There is nothing wrong with spanking. Some kids need to be spanked. Now when you start talking about beating, now that's where i draw the line. I was beat and i would never do that to my child.

Rebecca - posted on 01/06/2009

556

41

55

Quoting Michelle:

  Please stop the madness of calling 'spankers' abusive and assuming it escalates into violence - or starts out with violence. With some it may, but not ALL of us - please try to have an open mind here!


The point is that we don't actually know the long term affects of what you call 'non-violent spanking' and therefore we should not use it - I don't need an open mind on this point because I know it is not NECESSARY. There are so many other strategies that can be used ... why choose one which the evidence shows is more likely to have long term consequences?? Also if it really doesn't hurt, then on what basis is it more effective than saying: Your behaviour is making me really angry, stop doing that? That quite often works for me...








 

Rebecca - posted on 01/06/2009

556

41

55

i use choices as well in some situations. we actually have a whole range of strategies, some of which we pinched from 'liberated parents, liberated children' such as designing their own 'punishment', time outs, and just talking, to one i came up with myself that works with my daughter who loves to be challenged -- betting that she can't do some required behaviour by the time i count to a suitable number for that activity -- she loves the challenge involved.

[deleted account]

Thank you Rebecca for your insightful point of view! I have come to the same conclusion upon reading numerous studies on the subject. Kids 'misbehave' because they are either bored or they are trying to figure out the world around them! Research has shown time and time again that spanking increases with the child's age. What will a parent of a rebellious 15 year old do? Will a 'soft loving tap' on the bum do the job? Spanking is a short solution that will in turn cause long term problems. When I became a parent, I read many unbiased 'research' documents at the local university. I have still to read one that reinforces spanking! We can go around in circles with the subject because it is all a matter of choice! I openly choose to give my 3.5 choices for his behaviour (ex: we just went to a doctor's appointment and he refused to sit on the examination table..so I asked him "Would you rather get up on the table by yourself, or have mommy help you?) The matter of fact is that I didn't actually give him a choice, but in turn he felt empowered by having a choice. He decided to get on the table by himself. It has worked wonderfully in teaching him how to share, how to respect others and do what he is supposed to be doing. Parenting is the hardest job in the world, and I am sure that no one loves our kids more than ourselves. I use these 'difficult' moments to teach my children life long lessons...and if I keep him occupied with crafts, or simly by helping me around the house...I notice that he does not get into trouble and is eager to help! To each its own!

Carol - posted on 01/05/2009

73

7

7

I haven't read all of the posts on here but thought I'd give my opinion. We do give a swat on the butt if it's warranted. We do have other forms of discipline-time out, grounding, etc. And the majority of the time we do those instead of spank. Neither of my children-2 and 7-are abusive or violent. My 7 year old is in 2nd grade and he has never hit another child, never hit his brother. Even when he has been pushed on the ground and being held down by other another child or being choked by another child, he never once hit those children. So, I don't think the whole "if you hit your child, they will be violent" argument holds up, in my opinion only. I was given spankings when I was growing up and there is nothing wrong with me. I never hit other children growing up. There is a huge difference between giving a swat on the behind and leaving no marks and leaving bruises all over the body or having broken bones.



My sister spanked my nephew-who was probably 13-because he punched a hole in the wall of their house because she told him 'no'. She left no marks on him and he thought to get back at her he'd call social services. So, the next day here come two people knocking on her door to question and check out everything. She admitted to them that she hit him and explained the reason why. She then told my nephew to drop his pants to show them there were no marks. Case was dropped.

Michelle - posted on 01/05/2009

6

12

0

Thank you Tara!! The people on here against 'violence' - don't seem to understand that those of us that approve of and/or use spanking have ALL said that it is not the ONLY means of discipline and that it is not VIOLENT. No mark, just a stronger reminder. My kids learn at home that WE DO NOT HIT. A spanking is not HITTING - it is a controlled behavior used in a controlled environment - by adults only. When my children mimic our parental behavior in play, they remind dolls that you have to "remember the 'big' rules" - (which of course the dolls don't) then they tell them to turn around for a 'swat'. Once 'swatted', they ask the doll why she was spanked - and then say "That's RIGHT - to help you remember". I promise you Rupa, I have broken the abuse cycle. I don't get mad, I don't get even, I don't leave marks and my kids know EXACTLY what behavior will warrant a spanking. I teach consequences. My kids get praise and recognition DAILY for good choices. My kids get a swat or two (3 kids under the age of 7) MONTHLY, if that. My parents didn't spank, they BEAT. I SPANK. Big difference. Huge. Please stop the madness of calling 'spankers' abusive and assuming it escalates into violence - or starts out with violence. With some it may, but not ALL of us - please try to have an open mind here!

Tara - posted on 01/04/2009

165

10

9

Let's keep in mind that a spank is usually a flathand on the child's backside. It doesn't usually actually "hurt". It might sting for a second sometimes, but that's about it. In most places anything done to leave a mark on a child (ie a bruise or bump) is considered abuse, normal spanking does not usually leave "marks".



This being said...I spank my kids when warrented. Spanking for me is a way to immediately curb bad behavior when needed. If my kid keeps trying to push her sister off the balcony do you really think I'm gonna count to three and take TV privelidges away? No, I'm gonna grab her by one arm and swiftly crack that but a good time or two after giving her minimal warning. I'm not going to spank for refusal to eat vegies, but if a little one tries to touch a hot burner, plant one on the butt! Of course; the reason for the spanking has to be discussed or the behavior will continue, and sometimes additional punishment is appropriate. I am all for giving options and implementing punishments, but sometimes a spanking is most apropriate.

[deleted account]

I am so glad to hear that so many of you parents are against spanking, aka physical violence, because one day your kids will be going to school with my child, and I m glad that everyone will be in a safe enviroment. as far as the ones that do spank if you look at the physical abuse cycle you will find that physical abuse is a cycle, you learned it from your parents. You dont know how else to respond to your child so you hit. why not STOP, and learn how to effectively respond to their needs. negative attention is still attention, so if you are gonna put so much effort in something why not put it in the positive, other wise all you are teaching your child is, when they need attention, they have to be disobediant. as far as the fear aspect of it, i totally agree your kids should never know whats the end will be. They should always fear the unexpected, but they should never see it.

Rebecca - posted on 01/04/2009

556

41

55

i think parents in favour of spanking really miss the point.

the question for me is 'is it necessary?'

clearly it isn't, because there are so many other strategies to try. i have a range of different strategies to draw on if my children are not behaving.

if it isn't necessary, i believe one should use the precautionary principle: we don't know if this has long term effects or not, so we will err on the side of caution and not use it.

clearly, from this thread, some people were spanked and not affected by it too much. but many more WERE affected by it.

since the author of the thread mentions a link with delinquent behavior and non-spanking, i would ask that she refer me to a study that show this link, because anecdotal evidence of her own family is not enough -- i can come up with a number of alternative theories why a shift from smacking to time outs would not work for teenagers - and presume also that her mother sought help because of problems arising, so clearly smacking wasn't working as a control mechanism either.

i have done a lot of reading on the subject, and have only come across numerous studies that link delinquent behaviour with either neglectful or abusive parenting. i have never seen anything to suggest that not smacking causes delinquent behaviour. in fact, quite the opposite. troubled children are much more frequently cited as having come from violent homes. i would be very interested to see a study showing a link between non-violence and deliquent behaviour -- particularly where parents used alternative discipline strategies (not in a situation of total neglect and dereliction of parental duties).

i have seen numerous studies that say 'spare the rod spoil the child' is totally untrue, and that the opposite is true -- smacked children are usually 'spoiled' in the sense of being fearful of authority figures or openly rebellious towards them, regardless of how much you escalate the smacking.

in an non-neglectful home, everyone cares about their children, and will draw on a range of strategies for teaching children social skills, respect for certain social norms, etc. however, i don't see smacking as acceptable -- even if it seems to work -- because you have no way of knowing whether your child will feel ok about the smacking in the long run or not -- and just because you were ok with it, don't assume another child will feel the same way -- even if they tell you it's ok to keep you happy.

anecdotally, the people i know that were not overly distressed by being smacked as a child it is because the smacking was kept to a bear minimum. people who were distressed by it come from homes where smacking was the MAIN form of control. however, for example, my husband comes from a home where smacking was little used, but he is still traumatised by the incidents, partly because he keenly feels the injustice of someone bigger using such bodily force with someone smaller.

i have never even felt the remotest second of impulse to smack my kids. my older brother smacks his kids and he predicted when i became a parent i would too. well, i've been parenting for five years, and though my kids have tested my patience numerous times, it has never crossed my mind that smacking is something i would want to do.

we are going through a hard time with my five year old at the moment -- partly due to the boredom of loooooong school holidays at this time of year in my country -- this doesn't lead to more emphasis on punishment, but it does lead to more parental discussions on how to tackle the problems.

p.s. someone sent me a question on what is a poly-household based on my previous post. this means that my husband and i are not monogamous and we have other adults in our household with whom we have relationships, and who play a parental role towards our children. my two children each have a different father, but i live with both fathers, so my kids know they have two dads.

last night the one parental figure and i were commenting it must be tough on the kids to have 4-6 parents getting on their case at any one time rather than just two :D

Kelly - posted on 01/04/2009

29

24

7

hi im new to the site and have just read all peoples comments on spanking and what a debate.

but i have to say i dont spank my kids never have and never will i found that if i use a soft voice and never raise my voice then my child knows im happy but if he does somthing wrong and i use a raised but firm voice (not shouting) then he listens to the tone of my voice and he respects me 100% he is not perfect and will push but then he has things taken away im not against people who spank there kids but from what iv seen it just makes the child more fired up and makes the situation worse as then they are crying then some parents cant stand the crying and then you back to square one again,and i know a friend who spanks there child and now there child thinks its ok to hit other children if for exsample they want there toy so no i will never spank my child as my son has respect for other children and never has hit out x

Rebecca - posted on 01/04/2009

556

41

55

p.p.s. one parent in the poly- house would use smacking if left to their own decision, but since the rest of us are strongly against it, he agrees that there are plenty of other effective strategies that we can use and do use.

Rebecca - posted on 01/04/2009

556

41

55

p.s. i've never seen anyone who WASN"T spanked as a child arguing that its a good idea. it's always people who weren't too traumatised by their own beatings when they were a kid ... well, i was traumatised by the violence inflicted on me by my parents and i would never in a million zillion years consider doing that to my kids.

on the whole people say that my children are very well behaved, and very confident for their age. of course there are problems -- what parent does not have problems - i don't believe the difficulties are in any way reduced by smacking.

and i don't believe people who choose smacking as an option have REALLY thought deeply about alternative strategies. in my house (which happens to be polyamorous) the parents spend a lot of time discussing strategies for dealing with the kids.

sure smacking is less time consuming in the short run. but i think my kids should be raised with a lot of thought and consideration, and i don't object to any time spent on us adults talking things through with each other and coming to some better and common strategies.

Rebecca - posted on 01/04/2009

556

41

55

i am totally against spanking. how can we teach children that violence is wrong if we use it. i also believe that although also wrong a smack delivered in anger is more understandable than a smack delivered with cold consideration and calculation. i find it bizarre that anyone would go away and make a decision to hit someone.

in my experience any form of aggressive or confrontational punishment tends to escalate things ... whereas taking my child aside for a quiet discussion of why they shouldn't be doing something is much more effective.

we do give time outs, but that is when she is behaving in an anti-social way so that none of us want to spend time with her behaving like that. on the whole we find that one strategy does not work -- you have to think much harder about what to do about behaviour problems when you don't smack. smacking is an easy option.

but we try to work instead with 'consequences to your actions' so that there is a relationship between the consequence and the action that provoked negative attention - i also think talking things through helps kids learn all kinds of emotional language and insight, in a way that smacking only teaches you to not do what is on the list of don't do's. it does not teach kids to really think through their actions -- it's just an attempt at pavlovian impulse control -- which will usually fail.... by breeding yet more people who think violence is ok.

Nicki - posted on 01/04/2009

3

24

0

Spanking definitely has its usefulness, but should be used in very extreme situations and not often... Some other options that i like to use are exercises until their muscles are burning (like wall sits or running laps in the backyard, or climbing stairs). It actually helps them physically while leaving an impact as to the consequence... Another thing that worked well for us was Food changes.... When they get in trouble they can only eat whole foods like carrots and chicken - nothing processed which kills kids of today. It is pretty funny! This year I bribed my 3rd grader... I told him every week he goes in school without getting a warning he will get an Icecream on Friday... That has been great, but some kids are better with bribes others are good with punishment - We just happened to hit the nail on the head for this child in particular.

Chrystie - posted on 01/03/2009

17

17

0

In response to
Amy Lewis, Amen sister! Well said. I love that analogy! :) Although I belive in & use spanking to discipline our children, I have never heard that analogy, love it! Thanks!

Shannon - posted on 01/03/2009

15

10

2

Our children aren't sheep and definitely are not the stupidest animals in the world!

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms