Mother slaps 13mo on plane

Katherine - posted on 08/19/2010 ( 49 moms have responded )

65,420

232

5195

http://www.local12.com/news/state/story/...



I've really been thinking about all of this slapping, spanking, "popping", hitting etc....I'm wondering if these families should be required to go to mandatory counseling after the first offense. It seems that they get off too lightly, and they get court sentences of things that aren't germane to what they did.

Obviously this mother is stressed out, we don't know her situation, all we know is that she acted in a horribly inappropriate manner and hurt her child.

What are your thoughts on this?

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

[deleted account]

A child that young has yet to develop an understanding of cause and effect. All she understands now is that she was tired and needed help going to sleep and her mother slapped her in the face. How is that something appropriate to do? There are reasons the law in Canada is what it is. At 13 months, a spank or slap would not mean anything but my parent hurt me.

Whether the child had bruises from a dog bite or something more sinister, it doesn't matter. It is enough that she is so young and was smacked. The mother was probably at the end of her rope, yes, the father should have stepped in then if this is an ongoing problem, like was stated. The mother also should grow up and learn that a baby is a baby and she was the adult. Honestly, "because she kicked me"? You have GOT to be fucking joking. That is just short of, "So and so is on my side of the car" and, "He's looking at me, make him stop." Seriously, if I was the attendant, I would have taken the young child away from the violent older child and said, "I swear, I will TURN this plane AROUND!!!"

[deleted account]

Also if she can do that in public, what is she capable of doing behind closed doors..i hate to think.Spanking is wrong but going beyond it is dangerous and because its acceptable many have there own view on what spanking is and thats why some children end up hurt.

Sarah - posted on 08/19/2010

5,465

31

344

Can't imagine ONE SINGLE reason to "pop" a 13 month old.
I don't really agree with smacking, but I understand that OCCASIONALLY (and I mean occasionally) it's a last resort. However, hitting a 13 month old to stop them crying seems like warped logic to me.

This conversation has been closed to further comments

49 Comments

View replies by

[deleted account]

I've traveled many times on planes w/my special needs daughter who is a handful. I know how stressed out you get. There are times I feel like I'm about to have a complete mental breakdown. This is a 13 mo. old baby. She does not understand about traveling & was only expressing her own stress. What this mother did was totally wrong. I do think it would be a good idea if she were required to take parenting classes. If she slaps a baby in public, what is she doing at home when she's angry?

[deleted account]

My son is only 9 months old so I think hitting him is incredibly inappropriate. If he does something i don't like I say uh uh in a stern loud voice, the second time he does it I say "Marshall come here please" the third time I simply say "No" pick him and move him elsewhere. With biting I say in a stern clear voice "No Biting" I've never had to go any further than that as he slides off my lap and goes and sulks for a few minutes before coming back for a cuddle

[deleted account]

Right up front....I do NOT believe in hitting children. I don't see this as productive. I think all it will teach MY child is that if someone doesn't do what you want, you hit them. That's not what I am after. I want my child to learn how to sway people's opinions with his words....not his fists.

BUT...........I have a story. A friend, we will call her Stephanie...she tells me one day that her daughter called CPS on her..right in FRONT of her. For slapping her in the mouth. The CPS agent asked the little girl, WHY did your Mama just slap you in the mouth? The little girl laughed and said to the agent, Cuz I told her "F*** You! The agent said good. Your mama did the right thing.
That ended that. No reports...no investigations...no children were removed from her home.

NOW....I have a bit of a hangup on this black eye thing. I've HAD black eyes. From abusive men, from looking up from under the hood of a car and smacking myself with the hanging light (hung inside the hood of the car) from softballs, I even got a black eye from an open freezer door. (I stood up and didn't know my husband had opened it.)
I've also owned entire TEAMS of border collies. I've seen my share of bites. My own 16 month old baby has been nipped in the bottom lip by a weiner dog. I can't seem to wrap my mind around HOW a dog's tooth...or teeth can BLACK an eye. Every one of my black eyes came from BLUNT TRAUMATIC FORCE. Never from a small pointed object like a tooth. I can see a tooth leaving a gash, scrape...or even a bruise around the scrape. But how does a dog tooth...similarly shaped to a sharpened pencil inflict a black eye?

C. - posted on 08/27/2010

4,125

35

242

For most people that spank or slap their children, it's only used when something so horrible it was unthinkable was done. I don't think those who spank or slap OCCASIONALLY should get any sentence. Next thing you know, a teenager can get life in prison for pinching their little brother/sister for breaking their iPod *eye roll*

ANYWAY, on with the OP. I think 13m is really too young to be slapping a baby. They don't know what they are doing as far as whether they are hurting someone or not. They're still learning and I think slapping them that young is way out of line. They don't know any different.

Mandy - posted on 08/27/2010

233

16

8

In my mind smacking is wrong, I think it's assault, if we hit another adult we would be charged. It's not an acceptable method of teaching a child how to behave. I am proud to say that in the whole 5 years my oldest has been alive, I have only come close to smacking/spanking her and that was after she punched me in the face, luckily I remember myself and walked away. I would never dream of slapping either my 5 year old or my 19 month old son in the face.
This woman in the article is awful, her poor baby. In the UK physical punishment laws aren't clear - some people want a total ban others think it is a parents right to physically discipline their child - parents are allowed to smack as long as they don't break the skin or leave a mark. A man was charged when he smacked his daughter in a Dr's surgery, the uproar it caused was unbelievable, all sorts of people coming out and saying he hadn't done anything wrong.
I would step in if I saw a child being abused, whether it was being hit or screamed at, screaming at a child can be just as hurtful as hitting. We are supposed to protect our children and there is no need to parent with fear.

[deleted account]

I think any sort of physical discipline is inappropriate for a child that young. They don't thoroughly understand why they can't do things or why they are being punished at that age. I would never spank my child just because they were crying. First of all, that's only going to make them cry more! I would instead, try comforting them or talking to them in a firm but calm voice and if that didn't work I would simply remove them from the situation until they could calm down. I don't see a problem with spanking a child when they are old enough to understand right from wrong, but only as a last resort. If you do it every time they do something they shouldn't, then what are you going to do if they do something absolutely horrendous? Slapping your child is almost always a big no-no, but as with everything, there are rare exceptions. For example, when my son was 2 1/2, he went through this phase where he started hitting people in the face when he got upset. I tred everything to get him to stop, nothing worked. Then one day when he did it to me, I lightly popped him on his cheek right back, just the equivalent of how hard he hit me. He never once did it again after that, and neither did I! I'm not saying what this woman did was right, but I do think we should look at each situation seperately instead of making blanket judgments. I hate the whole "spare the rod, spoil the child" religious belief, too. Choosing a non-physical reward/punishment system for your child as long as it works is not spoiling your child. There are many effective ways of disciplining and they don't all involve physical punishment. I, personally, prefer that my kids to obey me out of respect instead of fear. And I feel that if I were to spank them every time they did something wrong, they would most likely become afraid. And if they're afraid, I doubt they would ever become very good at admitting when they made a mistake. And admitting a mistake is probably exactly what this woman needs to do to get back on the right track.

Lea - posted on 08/25/2010

540

11

21

I think the problem stems from couples being isolated from their extended families. I'm sure a lot of people know what discipline and parenting is but without an experienced person helping, the application gets botched. I mean I've heard people talk about "spoiling" a newborn by picking it up everytime it cries. People don't seem to have the idea that as your child grows, your interactions change. A lot of people treat babies like older children. I'm glad someone intervened here.

Pamela - posted on 08/24/2010

1,496

104

45

This is a case where the mom needs help - not condemnation. She lost it but the whole situation sounded enormously stressful and having her husband there yelling at her to calm down, does not help the mom calm down. That flight attendant should get kudos for stepping in. I think the mother was absolutely wrong to slap her 13-month-old baby but at the same time, dad maybe should have recognized his wife at the end of her limits. Maybe he could have stepped in sooner. I'm not condoning the mother's actions, but at the same time, who among us hasn't in a moment of extreme stress, done something we regret? (Of course, most of us don't go as far as slapping our babies around). And if this is something she struggles in, then she is in obvious need of counseling and childhood development classes. Because this may have been how her mother disciplined her.

My step-mother slapped my 6-month-old sister because she wouldn't eat the green slop Gerber called sweet peas. And it was a full slap in the face (I'll never forget it). Everything froze in me when she did it. I was about 10-years-old at the time and I remember deciding at that moment that I would not slap my children ever in the face. I never have. But my step-mom came from a background of incredible abuse, where getting slapped was normal (and less harsh).

Anastasia - posted on 08/23/2010

4

0

0

As I was reading the story alarm kept going off in my head to say this sounds like signs of abuse?! It's bad enough that the mother is slapping a 13mo baby but the fact that the baby has a black eye also?! Don't it make you wonder, that she could be responsible?! May be I am being paranoid, but if I see similar situation to this I would step in.
I agree on spanking your child to discipline them, but I think there is right time and place and should only be used as last resort. 13mo would not comprehend why he/she is being slapped, so why traumatize them?! Everyone has different ideas, techniques they use on their kids none the less I know a lot of parents would agree with me that this age is too young for this kind of discipline. I do not agree with parents who slap their kids on the face.

Tah - posted on 08/22/2010

7,412

22

400

@Loureen the black eye was from a dog bite...if im not mistaken...lets not say that the mother gave her a black eye...if it had come from the slap it would not have been there 2 seconds later when the flight attendant intervened..and yes i have seen pets scratch and cause things like bruises around the eye..my 3 year old has a area around his eye from playing with majesty and im glad noone doing their civic duty called cps on me.....

Ntombi - posted on 08/22/2010

43

14

6

And they let her off the plane with the baby. That baby should be in foster care. We all understand post natal depression and maybe she is suffering from it. For whatever reason she is no condition to look after tha baby. She might be overwhelmed and exhausted.

Nikki - posted on 08/21/2010

5,263

41

574

What a low life skank, she is lucky I wasn't on the plane, a 13 month old with a black eye; that is disgusting.

I will NEVER be able to understand mother's that harm their babies or children in any way.

I agree Katherine, mandatory counselling should be in place for all parents who have committed this kind of abuse.

This woman should have been charged with assault, pisses me off that children have no voice so these ass hole parents get away with assault by calling it discipline bullshit!

Charlie - posted on 08/20/2010

11,203

111

409

Nicole it is actually illegal in many countries in fact a mother was charged in Australia for smacking her teenage daughter .


The baby allegedly had a black eye , abusive ? most definitely .

I believe in Canada its illegal to spank under two and over 12 and most Scandinavian countries as well as a few other European countries have total bans .

I totally think a black eye regardless of age or relationship warrants an arrest i have no problem looking down my nose at a person who would treat a child worse than an animal .

[deleted account]

We may disagree with spanking/slapping etc. But there are those who view it as a valid form of discipline. It is not against the law to slap a child and as much as I disagree with the act, it is not my place to look down upon someone else for holding a different opinion and following a different parenting method.

No she should not be charged. No she should not have her child taken away.
If she were abusing her child and causing broken bones, strains and marks, then yes, but not because she slapped her.

Otherwise all of the previous generations parents, my parents, my grandparents and great grandparents etc should all be charged and treated as criminals.

Are there better parenting methods out there in my opinion? Yes!
Can I get everyone to believe that?
No.

That is the reality and the nature of our society.

It is also not my place to look down on and point fingers at or condescend to the people who choose a different parenting method from mine even if I disagree with it.
I can choose not to associate with people like that if it really bothers me, but they are not less then me or worse then me. I am not better then them because I don't slap my child.
I just choose to parent differently.

Charlie - posted on 08/20/2010

11,203

111

409

I was travelling on a plane with Cooper and he was on my lap and he threw his toy to the man next to me i thought " oh , he we go " i tried to get Cooper to play with his bag of blocks and the man said dont worry i have a 2 year old at home and he and Cooper played games hiding his toys and making them appear it was great !!

Katherine - posted on 08/20/2010

65,420

232

5195

I had a man come up to Alyce when she was screaming bloody murder. She was only 2 weeks old and I had to take her and Syd to the grocery store to get some food. It was pouring rain and she was inconsolable, everyone was staring at me like, "shut that kid up." He walked up with a bouquet of flowers and she stopped crying immediately. I was never so relieved. I was so stressed out!

Anywho, he saved my sanity that day.

Ava - posted on 08/20/2010

307

31

12

This is inexcusable. If a child is tired, they'll cry, whether you slap them or not. It doesn't matter. Slapping would only make it worse. Where's the logic? Thank god for the father who stood there and put the child to sleep the proper way. The mother was agitated and should have just walked away and let the father handle it. Period. CYS in PA wouldn't do shit either probably. Child services takes children from homes that are alright, and keeps them in homes that are horrible. This is clearly demonstrated in my old PA town where children live in homes with CYS caseworkers checking in on them, where the children smoke weed, get hit and abused, the parents are alcoholics, and the kids are begging for food all over the neighborhood and yet the parents still have their kids. It's ridiculous.

Jenny - posted on 08/20/2010

31

11

4

This is totaly wrong and it angers me to the core.Later they said the child had a black eye and the parents said it was from a dog bite come on the system needs to wake up.My children are in foster care because my husband stepped outside for a minute to take a breath because our child has alot of behavior problems he screams for 7 hours straight day in and day out and they said it is considered abuse to walk outside and leave your child unattended and I looked up the laws in South Dakota and that is the law in many states but it is ok to hit our children.
The other thing is she is mad at the child for kicking her and she tells the child to stop but then she uses violence no wonder the kid acts that way. we are telling our kids not to do something and then we do the same things.I think this ladys child should be in the system but this will be another case we will be hearing on the news about the child really beaten bad or dead.
But hey that is the system for you we have a really messed up system that must be fixed now!!!

Ashley - posted on 08/20/2010

364

40

39

We went food shopping yesterday and my 9 month old son wasnt happy at all (Turns out the diaper rash cream we are using is making his rash worse) A woman came by and started talking to him and he was quite for the time. I really appreciated it. Although a little awkward for me as I am shy when it comes to new people he was totally entranced by this woman. I think its great some people will help out a distressed mother in need.

Stifler's - posted on 08/19/2010

15,141

154

604

Everyone I know spanks their kids. Granted, it should have been on the arse instead of the face. I remember my dad slapping me in the face a few times to get me to shut up because I was talking shit as a kid. Do you think if I was sat in the naughty corner I would have respected him and not done it again. Pfffft.

Katherine - posted on 08/19/2010

65,420

232

5195

Yes, that's what she told everyone, Hannah. That the baby kicked her. Unreal huh?

[deleted account]

I've taken screaming babies in the grocery store...but I knew the moms! Not my best friends or anything, but acquaintances. I don't know if I'd have the courage to take a total strangers child, but I have played peek-a-boo to calm down stranger's children.

Shelley - posted on 08/19/2010

435

0

34

I don't like that she slaped the babies face but i do know how stressful it is on a plane with a baby. I taped my 14 month old on the hand on a plane because she kept pulling the man besides earphone cord out. It wasn't hard enough to make her cry just enough to make her stop.

If the father is such an expert why didn't he just take the child and settle her earlier my husband would have if i was getting really edgy.

I live in Australia and we do that alot look after each other. I took a screaming baby off the lady in front at the grocery store it was great the baby kept my kids entertained and she was able to pack her trolly and pay without holding her baby.

Charlie - posted on 08/19/2010

11,203

111

409

Barbera thats how i grew up in Tongan culture its the whole "it takes a community to raise a child idea " and i loved living there for a few years .

What that mother did was wrong she was no doubt stressed to act so terribly , i am completely against smacking , unacceptable .
The father is an asshole too .

[deleted account]

I would love to do that, too! Just walk up to a child crying in a store and give them a cuddle until they calm down so that the poor Mom can catch a breath. It would be lovely if no one would call the police on me, lol.

Hannah - posted on 08/19/2010

66

1

0

i heard on the radio this morning that the mom said she smacked her because the baby kicked her. WTF???

Sharon - posted on 08/19/2010

11,585

12

1315

You're right Barbara. I always thought it was so cool how other cultures just "take" babies/kids into their arms.

I miss that. I wish I had were a bit more ethnic looking! haha!! then I could pretend to not understand english/american and just snatch up babies for hugs!

OOOHHHH I wonder how that would work???? When some mom is having a meltdown - just walk up grab the kid, walk her to a sitdown place and wait out the storm? All the while pretending to not understand what she's saying....

Barbara - posted on 08/19/2010

537

19

42

I think it's partially a cultural issue. I've noticed that many other cultures are far more apt to have "uninvited" contact with other people's children.
When we went to the Yucatan with our 2 year old, people were constantly coming up to our kid, picking him up, talking to him, etc. When he had a tantrum in the airport it seemed like everyone wanted to help, which was kind of weird at first, but ultimately appreciated.
Another time, we were at a party and were the only Americans. Everyone else was from India. As soon as we walked in the door some guy took my son and walked off! Everyone held him, played with him, talked to him and no one asked our permission first. I had a Thai waiter walk off with him once as well. It's like in their cultures, children belong to everyone, and everyone takes part in their rearing. I think we could do with a bit more of that here.

Sharon - posted on 08/19/2010

11,585

12

1315

I was reading some commetary about this incident.

Someone wanted to know why didn't anyone stop this from escalating to the point that the mother slapped the child. A child psychologist commented that its really hard for anyone to step in - legally - until the mother slaps the child - nothing has actually happened. Bad parenting - yes, something actionable? nope.

Its also hard to gauge when its the appropriate time to step in. Most people seem to be in control or making the effort to control themselves until suddenly they aren't. Stepping in after the person has lost control is a gamble with your personal safety and dignity.

To this day I feel bad about not helping the mom with 3 or 4 kids and one in a shopping cart who was puking all over her and the floor. the FATHER or at least the man with her, WALKED AWAY. I got one whiff of vomit and got away as fast as I could. I found an employee and told him a woman needed help and why. He called for clean up and then went to help.

If it had been shit - I'd have helped, lol just so ya'll know.

Airplanes, these days, are incredibly stressful. I'm glad I haven't needed to fly much in the past few years.

The article also mentioned they looked up the guidelines/laws for spanking and didn't find mention of a comprehending child/age.

http://www.wmur.com/r/24675653/detail.ht...

I stand by what I said - the woman was WRONG. The flight attendent was RIGHT. The father is an asshole. Of EVERYONE he should have known his wifes limits and stepped in.

Ah - I should mention - I know what the mom in the article is talking about. When the kid goes so far over the deep end you can't get their attention. I've done the two finger to the cheek thing. Maybe once or twice. It sure as hell didn't hurt and I used that after snapping my fingers, whistling shrilly(sp?) etc. Its a "HEY! pay attention to me" thing. But there is no way you could ever call it a slap. The chubby cheeks barely even dented. And I've never been stressed out in that position either. I've done that only in public, for the express reason that I needed his attention in public. At home, I'd have put him in his room to have his tantrum and ignored him.

I also don't think he was 13 months old, probably closer to 2 maybe 3. its funny - when it comes to discipline I am almost ALWAYS referring to my oldest - omg he was SUCH a handful!!!!! Discipline wise - he needed the extreme of everything.

He's a wonderful kid (15) now and I'm so freaking proud of him I can't hardly stand it, lol.

Barbara - posted on 08/19/2010

537

19

42

I think it's good that the people stepped in and showed that woman that behavior like that is unacceptable. The main problem with deciding to use corporal punishment is that it escalates. She probably started when her child was very small (I've seen posts on COM where women advocate hitting babies only a few months old) and at this point a smack in the face seems like no big deal.
Hopefully she re-evaluates her discipline style after such an embarrassing occurrence. And hopefully it empowers more people to step in and voice their displeasure at people who believe hitting their kids is a justifiable punishment.

[deleted account]

How ridiculous! My daughter is 13 months and I would NEVER think to smack her face to get her to stop crying! What kind of twisted logic is that? If my husband is raging I don't punch him to lessen his anger, that's just stupid.

I live in Canada, too. As far as I am aware, you are only allowed an open hand on the butt of a 2-12 year old. Even that is debatable depending on the CAS worker you get. 13 months is far too young, they don't even understand cause and effect fully.

@Tara- Yeah, I never read in the Bible about whacking your child either. Although, in the Old Testament, many people assume that the "rod" means a switch instead of the shepard's staff that was used to gently guide.

[deleted account]

If i saw a parent give a light spank on the bum or hand i wouldnt step in..if i saw a child hit with force and on the face etc i would say something.Its the way its done believe me you know when its passed the line,i would say thats why the flight person stepped in by the way the mother did it and the force she used.Most of all because it was a innocent baby of 13mths.We all may lose it but thats not acceptable and the mother needs to be held accountable for her actions.

Amie - posted on 08/19/2010

6,596

20

412

I don't agree with hitting your children, regardless of circumstances.

I've been tempted too, oh man have I ever been tempted over the years. I, however, have never followed through with the thought.

The girl fell asleep in her dad's arms afterward right? So why didn't he intervene sooner? After all, the end of the article says he and his wife had argued about her hitting their child on numerous occasions before. Something's fishy.

I don't honestly believe she hit her that lightly either. I don't know a single person, no matter how anti smacking they are, who would step in for a "light pop" to get the kid to pay attention. I don't like it but unless I'm concerned for a child's safety I'm not going to step in.

Sarah - posted on 08/19/2010

5,465

31

344

Always astounds me when people say they hit their BABIES! 13 months is too young (IMO) to even understand getting a smack.

Katherine - posted on 08/19/2010

65,420

232

5195

Yes, in the face no less. In FRONT of people no less. That child is a bay IMO. My daughter is 17mo and I've never thought to hit her EVER. She just wouldn't get it and I just couldn't do it.

Tah - posted on 08/19/2010

7,412

22

400

just want to inform all the ladies that just admited to spanking i will be informing the authorities..it's my civic duty....

Sharon - posted on 08/19/2010

11,585

12

1315

We spank too but I can't begin to imagine how slapping your child in the face is going to make them stop crying. The woman is a moron and I hope her loser husband tosses her ass out a plane window, takes the kid and files for divorce.

Ashley - posted on 08/19/2010

364

40

39

Okay. Thats messed up this mother obviously needs some sort of help. You NEVER slap a child on the face. I'm okay with a little swat on a covered butt, or a tap on the hand, but never slap a child in the face. I mean if shes okay with doing that in public what is she doing to this poor baby behind close doors. The childrens aid or something should have been brought in.

Jessica - posted on 08/19/2010

345

39

51

I spank my children but I honestly can't remember the last time I have as we use it as a last resort. I have children ranging from 11mths to 8.5yrs and they all respond differently to dfferent methods of discipline. I would never smack my 11mth old! They are still learning and even at 13mths they don't really understand why mom is hitting them. Now when she is that old I will pat her on the butt if there is something she isn't supposed to be doing and no other attention grabber will work, but her butt wll be diapered and she gets patted on it all the time anyway so I wouldn't consider that spanking.

This woman obviously has no idea how to handle her child. If she would have gotten up and tried to console her she probably would have quieted down without any drama.

Tara - posted on 08/19/2010

2,567

14

114

So each state has their own rules about slapping, spanking etc. how do law enforcement officials determine what is abuse and what is discipline? In Canada our spanking law is a federal law, it applies across the country regardless of what province you live in. It's pretty strict too. Went to the supreme court of canada years ago because of some Christian group claiming they had a right to spank their child on the ass with a rod, or a switch or stick etc. or to use force against their children cause the bible says you must control your children through force (not sure what part of the good book says that) it was a long case but they lost and new spanking "rules" came into play.

Katherine - posted on 08/19/2010

65,420

232

5195

They're different in every state. Here in Michigan CPS would investigate, but I doubt they would do much. It's just crap.

Tara - posted on 08/19/2010

2,567

14

114

wow. After reading the whole story I wonder how often she "pops" this kid to get her to stop crying. It seems the husband isn't at all pleased with his wife's discipline tactics. Perhaps he will seek some counselling or support for his family. I think the flight attendant did the right thing. What are the laws for spanking or hitting a child in the US? We have laws in Canada that address the issue of spanking a child, hitting a child etc. if this had happened here it is possible she would have been charged.

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