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A Few Good Spanks…

Updated on November 6, 2017

…never hurt anyone, least of all a child. And I do believe that they are infinitely better than long lectures laced with sarcasm, threats or just plain tortuous length. Now this kind of a viewpoint could be highly unpopular in an age when children’s rights have become such a matter of concern and even one harsh word could be constituted as abuse. Well, if we want to raise a generation of namby-pamby, extremely sensitive, self-centred, thoroughly obnoxious kids, that’s fine. Otherwise maybe it’s time for parents to put their foot down and fight back like they did in New Zealand recently. Fight, not for themselves and their parental rights but for their children’s sake. Maybe we need to get back to the age of spanking – here are a few guidelines that come to mind.

Norman Rockwell (1894 – 1978) did 322 illustrations for The Saturday Evening Post magazine covers over forty years. This one of a mother spanking her child appeared on the November 25th edition cover way back in 1933.
Norman Rockwell (1894 – 1978) did 322 illustrations for The Saturday Evening Post magazine covers over forty years. This one of a mother spanking her child appeared on the November 25th edition cover way back in 1933.

Kids are like pups

They understand cause-effect. They do something they shouldn’t, they get a spank, they learn to try and not do it again. Otherwise they keep getting spanked like they learn. Very much like a rolled up newspaper and a pup. Repetition brings results in both cases. Children are simple and understand simplicity when it comes to correction – so let’s not complicate matters and confuse them.

Before the anger

Spank before you get angry when you spank to correct, not as a release for your frustration. At this point, once is usually enough. Once the tipping point is reached, you are not very often logical to know when to stop – so spank way before you get there. Never, ever slap, pummel, push, pull, shove, yell or abuse. Never. And there is no excuse for any leniency where that rule is concerned.

The bottoms are best

Soft enough to feel the pain so a lesson is learned but there’s no harm caused. Remember that young children have soft bones and you could easily cause damage if you hit them any and everywhere. Never, ever pull his pants down and spank him – you can correct a child without violating his dignity.

Keep in mind that spanking is done with an open hand, never a closed fist so it smarts but does not cause damage or break the skin.

Don’t expect instant change

Many children need to be corrected many times before they change. (The pup and the newspaper, remember?) How can you expect a little child to learn instantly? Try and spank the same way every time so he knows you are in control and you mean business. Don’t let the bully in you come out where you take the day’s frustrations out on your little baby. Some children learn very quickly, some take time – this could be genetic, maybe. So if you were a slow learner when it came to correction……

Don’t torture with talk

Lecturing them is like Chinese torture. You start and you’ll be doing it the rest of your life till they’re sick and tired of you. Act, don’t talk should be every parent’s guideline. Look at it this way – if men or women did it to their spouses, they would be branded ‘nags’ or worse, mental abusers. If you need to teach children about right or wrong, good or bad, keep it short. Remember, they learn by example much more than anything else. Of course you can talk to them at length – about the wonders of the universe, the beauty of the world around, about the incredible things to be found in books, about how much you love them. Lectures stunt a child’s mind – inspire them so they are always learning with minds that are ever expanding.

They’re children, not adults

Don’t talk to them like adults, don’t treat them as adults. Children feel secure within the confines of discipline. Set the limits and correct them when they cross it. As they grow, you might want to re-look at those boundaries and limits but when you do, make sure to let them know. In short, don’t deprive them of their childhood and make them grow up too fast. And please don’t ask them to understand you or your problems or your frustrations or what you’re going through. If you need to go to a shrink, do so – don’t burden your child with anything but child-friendly things.

Spanking ’n loving

They go hand in hand – you can’t really love a child and not correct him. You can’t spank a child when there isn’t a lot of hugging, loving and caring otherwise. When you’ve got both in perfect balance – a little bit of spanking and a lot of loving - that’s perfect parenting!

Don't miss this great hub on Discipline and Boundaries by Elena.


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    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 6 years ago from India

      Hi Stella - that's abuse! And I'm so sorry to hear that you suffered when you were young. Spanking should be a last resort and it should NEVER hurt - just be a token of correction.

    • profile image

      Stella 6 years ago

      I was spanked as a child until I was...I don't know exactly, maybe around twelve...and then the parent who believed in spanking moved out. I cringed as if expecting to be hit every time I thought I was in trouble for months, if not years, after he was gone. I still do sometimes, and I also believe that it is the cause of my fear of making mistakes. This is the cost of spanking, and it is, in my opinion, too high. I'm not saying that lecturing is the answer, either. My own personal belief, and the way that my other parent raised me after my spanking parent moved out, is that having something taken away, like a privilege, a certain amount of time doing something they love, or an object that the child is especially fond of is the best way to discipline a child. Also, make sure they know that certain behaviors will result in certain punishments and then follow through with the punishment if the child does the behavior.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 6 years ago from India

      Not pain Jack - that would be so wrong - but it's correction without the pontificating.

    • profile image

      Jack 6 years ago

      You parents who are so desirous of inflicting pain on your children to "teach" them, don't deserve to be parents.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 6 years ago from India

      Thank you Parvez!

    • profile image

      parvez selim 6 years ago


      its a great hub. I really appreciate for this touchy topics. Besh wishes

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 6 years ago from India

      Hi Job - ideally, yes. It's only when things get out of control that a spank might do the trick - never hard, never in anger, just to show that what they are doing is wrong.

    • profile image

      job 6 years ago

      My rights to disciplining my children, stop just where their body's begin.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 7 years ago from India

      You said it, Lady_E!

    • Lady_E profile image

      Elena 7 years ago from London, UK

      Great Tips - a little spank and we should tell the child why we are doing it. "Spare the Rod and Spoil the Child."

      Shuki ria. :)

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 7 years ago from India

      Hi Calling Crow - we are so idealistic at that age, aren't we? Well, you're still young - and it looks like you're doing a really great job of being a parent :)

    • profile image

      Calling Crow 7 years ago

      When I was younger, still a teen, I swore to my friends that I would only ever yell at my kids, if I had any. At that time I had also sworn I would never, lol! Here I am, a little more than 10 years later and I have discovered that the best way for us is to do it all! Fortunately, I only have to raise my hand to them every so often (I've been blessed with 2 very wonderful little people) and usually get to talk the the sense into them, but I will testify that even every so often, the kid needs a spank! Not sure why, but it's very true.

      Thank you for addressing such a sensitive subject so carefully and elegantly.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 7 years ago from India

      De Greek - first off, 'old Shalini' haha!

      I do believe that if correction can be done without spanking, that's great. However, I see too many kids around me and the children are so badly behaved simply because many parents don't believe in checking them. We got married late and we have an 18-year old daughter. I think what my husband and I were very careful about was not to spoil her because we knew it would make things difficult for her as she was growing up. I totally agree with you that fear is no way to tame a child. But there has to be respect and the knowledge that certain boundaries cannot be crossed. There has also got to be a lot of love so cunning and control cannot grow and fester.

      Finally, though that was a rant against a number of parents who have been so unfair to their children by spoiling them, I will concede that there is nothing better than experience when it comes to bringing up children :)

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 7 years ago from UK

      Well, now Young Shalini. I have five children so I have some knowledge on the subject (I think). My first child was the most unfortunate, because I used my father's methods of discipline, which was to spank. My last two I did not lay a finger on, as with maturity came more understanding of children. My eldest could not understand the change in me and they objected to what they saw as pampering of the youngest.

      However, my relationship with my youngest was so much more effective without that bottom spanking that I once thought was part of raising a child, just because my own parents put me through it.

      So, Young Shalini, this is one instance where I shall disagree with you, on the basis of experience. It is possible to raise a child without spanking. Of course there must be boundaries and limitations and children, being children, will try to cross them. The answer is to take away the computer or the TV or whatever it is they like at the time, for SPECIFIC periods according the child's offence. Such specific periods MUST be short to be effective. From one to seven days. If you overdue it, then you create a reaction that could be the opposite of the one you want.

      My greatest regret is that I have learned these things rather late in life. This is from one of my stories:

      “As a father I have at last learned that ‘the result of punishment on men and animals is the increase of fear, the promotion of cunning and the control of desires. Punishment tames a man, but does not make him better’. This is not one of my own gems, but belongs to a fellow philosopher by the name of Nietzsche”.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 7 years ago from India

      Hi lorlie - sometimes, once is enough I guess. Sometimes maybe just a yelling is enough. But children need the security of boundaries and I do believe they grow up better for it. Thanks for coming by and reading!

    • lorlie6 profile image

      Laurel Rogers 7 years ago from Bishop, Ca

      This article is absolutely fantastic, Shalini. I raised one child-a son-and spanked him only once. He was in real danger, you know, out messing around in the LA streets, and I was really angry and afraid for him. He never did it again and I think he saw the raw fear in my eyes which he now says really affected his choices.

      Thanks for writing such a 'well-rounded' piece.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Hi Dao - thanks for reading and for the link!

    • Dao Hoa profile image

      Dao Hoa 8 years ago

      I just wrote an article about this too. I like to give readers more on the subject and our hubs complement each other. Therefore, I link yours to mine. I hope it is OK with you.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Hi Pollyannalana (what a lovely username!) - I'm so glad you came by. I was wondering if I maybe my ideas were a bit outdated when it came to kids! I do believe children are better off when they know the boundaries and I think 'Spare the rod and spoil the child' is relevant - as long as we use a smack to check and not to hurt or to take out our own frustrations!

    • Pollyannalana profile image

      Pollyannalana 8 years ago from US

      I agree with you completely. You use the word spank and all these people who have absolutely no control over their kids scream child abuse. I am sure all my siblings and I have been spanked and just as sure that only the threat it could happen kept us in line. This new idea against spanking in a sense keeps parents from getting involved, detaching from their responsibility to see their children are brought up right and the people who kill kids are not more or less apt to regardless of the law. My sister in-law was so terrifed if she touched her kids they would call the law, her daughter threatened her that she would all the time. I know it is hard not to spank in anger but if you wait until the anger is over, what's the point? lol. I think you can be mad but if you love your kids and are a normal person, anger won't turn to murder. You are responsible for your children's action until a certain age and I believe the bible says to use physical punishment, and that it won't kill them, God is talking to Christain parents and whether you bring religion into it or not children today prove the point, without a doubt. I also believe there is only one spot for a spanking that is well padded to not cause lasting injury.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Hi Nell - the more I read, the more I realise that spanking has to well-defined too. Much as I believe it is necessary when children don't listen, it's sad how it can degenerate to abuse and how many have experienced that kind of abuse!

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 8 years ago from England

      Hi shalini, I read your hub with interest as I totally absolutely agree with you! My mother said it would never hurt the children and she was so right, today people seem to be scared of their children, and then the children don't know where the limits are. well done for stating the truth! Nell

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Well, wsp - I guess that's fodder for a whole new hub!!

    • wsp2469 profile image

      wsp2469 8 years ago from Alta Loma, Ca

      So where do you stand on the issue of spanking in a relationship? At most, I might let a girl spank me on the first date but ONLY through my underwear. I don't let a girl spank my bare butt until the second or maybe not even the THIRD date.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Thank you Song-Bird!

    • Song-Bird profile image

      Renee Hanlon 8 years ago from Michigan

      Great hub! You are right on.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Benji - thanks for reading - I'm sure you'll make a wonderful parent :)

      Alissa - I agree - and as long as it's a balanced approach, it works.

    • Alissa1985 profile image

      Alissa1985 8 years ago from Arkansas

      I agree with you and I do spank my children. I try time out first, if that don't work then yes its a spanking. Even if we are out in public I will tell them that I am not afraid to reach down there and swat them on their little behinds and they know that. If they are acting up and not listening then yes, they need to learn. But like you said don't take it to far and don't take your frustrations out on them.

    • Benjimester profile image

      Benji Mester 8 years ago from San Diego, California

      I agree completely. I like your tips, especially not torturing a kid with talk. That was the worst. I'm not a parent yet, but I'm very much looking forward to it someday. It's good to learn early, how to be a good parent, I think.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Thank you osws_bluemoon. It's tough being a parent or teacher today, isn't it?

    • osws_bluemoon profile image

      osws_bluemoon 8 years ago

      Hi Shalini, great hub and I agree with you entirely. As children, my sisters and I had the occassional smack and it never harmed us or emotionally scarred us. It taught us to grow up respecting authority, and to live within socially acceptable boundaries as happy children. It's a world gone mad when parents are criticised for administering mild, corrective measures. Lack of discipline and control can lead to many unhappy lives. Of course I'm 100% against violence of any kind, but like you, I don't consider a light smack as violence.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Suiiki - when you do have little ones, they are going to be soooo lucky! It's admirable when an older sibling can give a child the sense of security that setting of boundaries gives them. Thanks for coming by!

    • Suiiki profile image

      Suiiki 8 years ago from City of the Newly Wed and Nearly Dead

      Stumbled here from Elena's hub. I agree on all points: Spanking is a last resort and should be done before anger strikes, done in a loving manner, and done only with an open hand. Most children will never require spanking if they have the right boundaries in place and receive consitent enforcement of those boundaries.

      I leanred from my parents' mistakes, and when babysitting my two youngest sisters (8 and 9 1/2 years younger than me) I had my rules, which I consitently enforced. I did spank the youngest once, when my parents were both out of town. She was yelling at everyone, refusing to sit down and follow the rules, and had started lashing out physically at everyone and everything. I put her over my knee and gave her one swat on the butt. She was about four at the time. Since then, for the most part, she listened and followed the boundaries. Regardless of whether our parents were home, the rules that I had laid out were followed and she grew to have more respect for me than she had for our parents.

      I plan to do the same when I have little ones of my own. I still believe that the one spanking I ever gave my sister was only necessary because the rules my parents had changed all the time and were inconsistently enforced. (When my father did enforce a rule, it was with a two-week grounding and a whipping with a belt, hair brush, wooden spoon, feather duster, rubber hose, or whatever else he could get his hands on, and graduated to fists and pots and pans as I got older. That's not acceptable, ever.)

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Lowell's Notes and hubpageswriter - thanks for reading. Yes, discipline is necessary but the more I see from the comments, so is a lot of loving :)

    • profile image

      hubpageswriter 8 years ago

      This is so true. More often than not, parents avoid spanking totally and sometimes, the kids may get too brave and getting naughtier by the day. Once in awhile, a spank will do them good for sure. Great article.

    • Lowell's Notes profile image

      Lowell's Notes 8 years ago

      Thanks for posting this! Some of the most unhappy children I have ever seen are the one's whose parents refuse to spank them.

      I do not condone abuse of any kind--including letting children put themselves in dangerous situations because a parent refuses to take control.

      Clearly defined rules, consistent and fair discipline (including spanking) makes for a happy and peaceful home.

      I was raised in such a home with a brother and three sisters and have four children of my own in such an atmosphere.

      My brother and sisters are all happy, thriving, successful people.

      My oldest son has accepted the call to preach and is working with a youth group in Virginia. My other three children are happy, confident kids who live well and laugh often. accident? I think not. :)

    • profile image

      Caylan Kowalski 8 years ago

      so many comments so little time.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      I am one - I have a 17 year old. And yes, I have spanked her a few times between 2 and 6 - not hard but it was enough to correct her. Thanks for coming by!

    • Waren E profile image

      Waren E 8 years ago from HAS LEFT THE BUILDING............

      Such wisdom,you are truly a good parent,if you're not a parent yet,you're destine to be,your consideration and grace in this subject will change any parent that read this hub!Well done:)

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Hi Helen - when spanking goes from just a correctional swat to hitting and abuse, the scars never fade and I understand why you would never want to spank your child. Sometimes I wish there were an erase button that could wipe any violence to a child away!

    • Helen Cater profile image

      Helen Cater 8 years ago from UK

      I am a firm beleiver in not spanking your child. having been in an abusive relationship a decade ago, and having been spanked as a child, I am sure unless there is no other option, that spanking a child is not right for me. For me my children have had the good things in their lives taken away. I suppose it depends on where you live and the quality of life as to this working. You have some great adds on here to which I would love to look into. This subject interests me. I must say I am open o other peoples views.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Thanks for reading everyone!

      Kimberly - I will go read your hub after this. Thanks for the link.

      PastorBrady - I totally agree with you. It has to be done with love - only then is it permissible - never otherwise. Done right and when saying No doesn't work, I do believe it makes for better brought up children.

      Cris - the right balance is the operative word - one without the other is a big no-no.

      phoenixarizona - yes, there are other ways - and if they work, great. The trouble is, all too often, we see spoiled kids around who are that way simply because they haven't been told that what they are doing is not acceptable. So whichever works, I think the final result has to be to guide the child towards a path that makes them socially comfortable - not misfits - with love and discipline. I appreciate your point of view :)

      Misha - Toddle noodle doo to you too :)

      I'm guessing you agree!

      DoodleLynn - I think you've put this in perspective - whenever absolutely necessary should perhaps have been the operative words.

      Stanley - No - that kind of hitting and cruelty is not just not OK - it is criminal - I am so sorry. I do believe that love is a child's birthright and this isn't love. I do hope you find all the love in the world to make up for this in the days to come!

    • Stanley_19802 profile image

      Stanley_19802 8 years ago

      I am also one of those who feel hitting is not ok. There are so many other methods that work. Time out, doing extra chores, grounding them from playing with friends, grounding them from TV, taking away things (kids today have computers, cell phones, internet camera, and the list goes on). I don't have children of my own, but those I have baby sat, I have never once had to hit them. Most times, a time out was effective. During my childhood, I was punished MANY different ways. My dad who was an alcoholic was absive, lots of beatings. When I was little, when I did something wrong he would make me stand with my arms out and hold two dictonaries in each hand for 30 minutes, if I dropped them, I got spanked and the time started again. My mom, she would call the children's psychiatric hospital and tell them I was suicidal for a minimum of a 3 day punishment being held there. And the hospital did their own things, including be put in the solitary room overnight with no lights for refusing to drink a tranqulizer. And the back injury for going to my room instead of the solitary room to cool down from a heated call from my mom. With school, I have been put in a solitary room in the school, or held down for not giving up an ink pen that I was accused of stealing and having a staff members elbow pressed into my shoulder blade till I was screaming from the pain. Because of my past, I have MANY problems. I can say for sure, I will not now, or in the future ever hit my children, or allow anyone else to cause harm to them. You can give discipline without causing harm. Hitting is easy, giving a meaningful punishment without harming the child is parenting. People need to stop taking the easy way out. Children fearing you, is not the same as respect.

    • DoodleLyn profile image

      DoodleLyn 8 years ago from Upstate New York, USA

      Whoa, lots and lots of varied comments here....looks like you hit a hot spot! I agree with you and Dr. James Dobson. Spanking, only when a child is being openly defiant, is not only acceptable, but necessary. Having said that, each child is different, and other measures should be tried. When all else fails, a spank on the buttocks can do wonders to pause a defiant attitude. I had to spank my granddaughter once (thankfully only once) and it broke my heart. But she respected me, and never repeated the offending action with me again. Thanks for stepping out into this controversial arena. Great hub.

    • Misha profile image

      Misha 8 years ago from DC Area

      RAmen Shalini! :)

    • phoenixarizona profile image

      phoenixarizona 8 years ago from Australia

      Shalini, I am sorry but I absolutely do not agree. The first thing I want to teach my seven kids is "it is NOT ok to hit."

      You are right about consistency. That is the key. I absolutely do not agree with spanking at all as there are other ways to teach your child right from wrong without torturous lectures and certainly without yelling, nagging or spanking.

      My kids know with one sentence which is "That is not acceptable you can go to timeout/ you will lose screentime/ you will not be going to such and such's." My children are good children, they are not wild by any means and I know they will grow up well adjusted with the understanding that no matter the circumstances it is not ok to hit or be hit.

      I do however, love the structure of your hub. I think it's great. Take care now.

    • Cris A profile image

      Cris A 8 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      Hey Shalini

      I think most of us who have read and commented thus far have experienced spanking at some point and apparently we've all turned out to be adults with just the right balance of sensitivity and level-headedness. But thanks for putting everything in perspective - it should clear some lines :D

    • PastorBrady profile image

      PastorBrady 8 years ago from Westerville, Ohio 43149


      I speak mostly as a Grandfather and one who grew up in the 1950's. As a young child I remember receiving a couple of well placed spankings on the place I was told was not just for sitting.

      That place also was used to instruct in me in the concept that there was a right way and a wrong way to act in a civilized society. That learned concept has served me well for almost 6 decades and I am a better man for it.

      If parents and I think most are "Loving and Caring" not abusive and used spanking as a discipline for proper instruction than it should be applied to that particular seat of knowledge.

      If it were lovingly done, then we would not have to witness on a daily basis in stores and else where those poor parents and their obnoxious brats; rather what we as a society would see young people that know to respect their parents, other adults and perhaps even each other.


      Pastor Brady

    • Kimberly Bunch profile image

      Kimberly Bunch 8 years ago from EAST WENATCHEE

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Jay - thanks as always for reading. I, too, feel that discipline when there's love equips you for life later on.

    • jayb23 profile image

      jayb23 8 years ago from India

      Brilliant hub Shalini. Discipline is imp as a part of growing. If my parents were too soft on me when I was growing things would hav been different, but Iam happy that I was disciplined properly, life later on is much easier to live. Keep up the good work

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      one2get2no - thanks for reading!

      Hendrika - rulers should be a no-no - and the right kind of spanking could be okay :)

    • Hendrika profile image

      Hendrika 8 years ago from Pretoria, South Africa

      You have a few good points here. I'm very anti-spank though as I grew up in a South Africa where teachers had rulers permanently attached to their hands and hit you for making mistakes, even if you really tried your best.

      Today I'm 58 already, but I still resent that and have a real revulsion to spanking a child. I agree that sometimes it seems to be a good idea, but my emotional reaction stays. Must say, my kids turned out just fine without spanking. Both very responsible, good Christians and good fathers to their children! (THEY DO SPANK THEIR KIDS THOUGH TO MY HORROR!!!)

    • one2get2no profile image

      Philip Cooper 8 years ago from Olney

      Exactly what I have been preaching.....thank you...well written

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Thank you all for reading - I'm wondering if I've stirred up a hornet's nest??!!!

      SimplyRedd - I agree but I would like to qualify it - a lack of discipline and a lack of loving :)

      quicksand - I'm sorry if this came thru as violent - that wasn't what it was meant to be! I do believe that children who are loved and corrected are a lot more balanced and a lot more equipped to face the world.

      G-Ma - that's what I meant to convey! love and togetherness and discipline!

      james - if I were to break the law, then I should expect to pay for it!

      emievil - yes, so important! Hurting a child is always a no-no - you have wise parents :)

      TMinut - like you, I feel that parents need to be in control, not controlling and one can only do that if there is a certain protocol set up in the family about where the authority lies. I do believe it makes for more secure, happier children.

      Jaspal - I think depending on the child, correction could be from a firm No to a spank - as you say, children, like pups, tend to fit in very quickly - as long as it is done without instilling fear and without cruelty!

      Amanda - yes it is - and I'm glad you can look at two contrary viewpoints. It isn't necessary to spank - just when absolutely necessary I feel. Schools - I don't know - though I see your point about how some kids will only understand physical punishment.

      There's a little boy I know who is so unpopular simply because he is never corrected. He is talked to, endlessly, lectured too lovingly and he's had trouble in three schools. He does whatever he wants, says whatever he wants and if anyone corrects him, woe to them! My heart goes out to that child - he's becoming a misfit through no fault of his own!

    • Amanda Severn profile image

      Amanda Severn 8 years ago from UK

      Hi Shalini, goodness this is a difficult topic. I was brought up without smacks, and, apart from smacking my son twice for biting his sister when he was small, I've never resorted to spanking. Having said that I've seen spanking used to good effect by other moderate parents, but I'm sorry to say, it still makes me cringe. Now having made my stance on spanking, I'm going to say something completely contrary. I do believe that children in secondary schools should still receive the cane, or the slipper. Shocking, eh? But my reasons are clear. Some children (perhaps those that come from homes where physical punishment is the norm?) understand this form of correction better than any other. It should never be used for trivial matters, but when it was still available to head-teachers, it did act as a deterrent for many badly behaved children.

    • Jaspal profile image

      Jaspal 8 years ago from New Delhi, India

      This is such a nice hub, Shalini, on an important subject concerning all of us. I agree with you to a large extent: Spare the rod and spoil the child. But the rod (or the spanking) should be used sparingly.

      It is not always necessary. Sometimes, a brief and firm talk (not a long lecture) is good enough.

      In the example of the pup, the rolled up newspaper has more sound effect than infliction of pain. And, even that mild pain is not always needed. Often a sternly spoken word suffices, especially when combined with a reward or appreciation for doing the right thing. For example, when house training a pup, one tries to catch him when he is just about to pee, and then make a sudden loud sound, as with a tin piggy bank smacked against a hard surface. This sudden loud noise shocks the pup and he stops what he was about to do. One picks him up quickly and takes him out ... After he does his job at the right place, one rewards him with a small treat.

      It’s so similar with children. Of course, if they are stubborn, and the firm/stern verbal correction doesn’t have an effect, then a smack, or a tweak of the ear, or any other humane punishment is very much in order. It is, after all, the way of the world even for grown up men and women. Commit an offence and you get punished for it.

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      TMinut 8 years ago

      The whole idea of one adult challenging another with the question of "should I hit you if I don't like what you do?" as a rebuttal to spanking doesn't work. There's a very obvious difference in spanking and attacking and there's a huge difference in children's thinking and adults'. Children do NOT always equate hitting others for disagreeing because of being spanked by parents they know love them and are insisting on a major change in behavior or attitude.

      Parents ARE the authority and should be, it's their responsibility to be in control until the child can make decisions on their own and behave appropriately. Parents refusing to be so make the immature child raise him/herself, demanding more than they can handle. Laws take authority from parents who love and care about their children but hasn't stopped those who abuse. Those people still beat and assault their children physically and emotionally, some openly, some secretly. They never were lovingly correcting their children and laws don't change that.

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      Uma 8 years ago

      Hi Shal! Nice hub.

      I don't quite agree with spanking as a tool for discipline, though I guess I don't look at a pat on the butt as "spanking". A pat on the back, or on the wrist may be alright but rewards and consequences, work better in the long run.

      Hitting as a tool for communication although has been accepted in our times, makes it an accepted method of conflict resolution. If one does not listen, or agree, then one can hit. While one parent may be enlightened enough to hit "just before one gets angry" etc, not all personalities may have the skill, and end of hitting too much. And we land up raising kids who think its ok to beat up each other, if they disagree on issues.

      The idea is to teach kids there are consequences of one's actions. Receiving or losing privileges and rewards are productive, because it mimics real life.

      Just my two cents !

    • emievil profile image

      emievil 8 years ago from Philippines

      Hi Shalini. This is a great, great hub and should be read by all parents. We grow up on spanking and my parents' rules are (1) to spank at the bottom ONLY) and (2) to spank us while we're lying face down (my father didn't want to spank us while we ran away from them because he was afraid we'll get hit in the "sensitive parts"). We were not beaten black and blue and for us, the discipline we got made us what we are right now, not too stubborn but not to "soft" either. My husband and I agreed that this will still be the way that we will discipline our children because we believe "mild" spanking will reinforce the discipline that we will try to instill in our children. I believe a lot of parents wish this is still the same way, unfortunately, we can see that we are becoming more lenient as a society and children are growing up more spoiled and more "in control" of their parents than ever.

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      james burrett 8 years ago

      Is it ok if I spank you if you misbehave ? I thought not...

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      Merle Ann Johnson 8 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

      Children learn quickly when you "say whatyou mean and mean what you say" occasional swat may just them know you are at your limit...Afterall Parents are the grown-up??? and is their responsibily to keep their children safe from all sorts of have the experiences they don't...

      I was spanked also as a child and we also Prayed to God every night as a family...Faith helps...Great hub my dear...:O) Hugs

    • quicksand profile image

      quicksand 8 years ago

      Shal, I simply read what Simply Redd says, and I believe that excessive discipline at home also leads to many problems! So it's best to "STRIKE" a balance between the two. I meant "STRIKE" a balance.

      By the way, Shal, I used to think that you were a non-violent, and compassionate sort! Why this sudden burst of hostility? Wink! :)

    • Simply Redd profile image

      Simply Redd 8 years ago from Canada

      Very nice hub! I find it quite fascinating that society dictates how we should raise our children (no spankings), and then go on to wonder why today’s youths are disrespectful and delinquent. Lack of discipline at home leads to many problems.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      quicksand - no thud!!! :D man or beast! Just a gentle spank or swat :)

    • quicksand profile image

      quicksand 8 years ago

      I am in favor of "thud." Man or beast the same thing goes! :)

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Hi queenbe - I'm a Norman Rockwell fan too - just love his style and the humour he portrays. Thanks you for reading!

      AIDY - I'm so sorry! Sometimes I forget that not everyone has parents like mine and that I should be more sensitive when it comes to topics like this! I'll take what you said a bit further - I think parenting should be restricted to people who are sound adults.

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      Am I dead, yet? 8 years ago

      Shalini, I followed Frieda's hub on over, well done. I for one, never benefited from my parental 'discipline' sessions. My father ran the home as a dictator and there was no waiver in freedoms unless he assigned them as so. I feel that good parenting skills are a progress for developmentally sound adults...I just wished my parents understood the importance's expressed in your hub. Maybe I would be more confident and not so self conscious. Thanks for the brilliant hub, Shalini, another lesson learned, as always.

    • queenbe profile image

      queenbe 8 years ago from NY

      The photo you chose to use for your outstanding article is what caught my eye. I am a Norman Rockwell freak. I use 'freak' in the most positive of light. I had to read what you had to say and I agree with ALL of it whole heartedly. I have a lot to learn about writing and I will be reading more of yours. Thank you. Q

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Sally - I can see your point of view. If it can be done with love and firmness, that's great. However, over the years. I've seen so many children so badly behaved that they are a nuisance to everyone around. I've seen schoolteachers trying to maintain discipline and being taken to task by parents for hurting their children's feelings. I believe that every child given to us has to be nurtured with love. Sometimes though, as every good gardener knows, there's a bit of pruning needed :)

      landthatilove - that's such a great example - yes, I wish we could keep it simple. I like your differentiating between swatting and mauling. Most animals do it without anger - almost instinctively - their way of saying No.

      Dirtdog - yes, parents should be taught - oh, how I wish! While I do believe in checks to prevent child abuse, we can sometimes carry things too far.

      jiberish - I guess children know they can't push the limits when they have parents who are firm and yet fair. They just automatically and happily fall in line.

      DeBorrah - you make a great point there about age - yes, disciplining should take into account how old the child is and on no account should one spank to hurt.

      FP - That is crucial - where to draw the line. I hope most know!

      Candie - just something I felt - but it's just my experience speaking. The ones who are against it have obviously seen what the darker side of spanking can be like!

      Thanks all for the comments!

    • Candie V profile image

      Candie V 8 years ago from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure!

      Thank you Shalini, for stepping out here.. I'm not surprised at the swing of sentiment here... but you are right.. swats are diff from abuse. I'm in your corner, my friend!

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      Feline Prophet 8 years ago

      Most of us grew up in an age when spanking wasn't viewed with the horror it is today, and we turned out alright! There is a world of difference between a spanking to enforce discipline and cruel abuse, and most parents would know where to draw the line I hope.

    • DeBorrah K. Ogans profile image

      DeBorrah K Ogans 8 years ago

      Shalini Kalgal you have made some great points!

      It is quite appropiate to discipline a child this is necessary for their wellbeing. But it should never be out of anger. Each child has a different temperament and should be disciplined accordingly and age appropiately as well. I think you captured it in the title "a few good spanks" on the bottom or a tap on the hand.

      Establishing boundaries are important because they help children to feel safe. It is also important that they know early on that they are to be respectful of others. When they do not want to behave "time out" is most appropiate. When in public correct them as well! It is important to be consistant in your discipline. This let's them know that there is a consequence for their actions regardless of where they are. They in fact have chosen to stop the activity and no longer participate.

      Raising children properly takes patience. Afterall love is patient...

      You are right don't torture them discipline is much better than punishment!


    • jiberish profile image

      jiberish 8 years ago from florida

      Nice Hub, I agree a little spanking goes a long way. I used to make my kids go out and get a switch, it stayed on top of the refrigerator, only had to use it once or twice, other times just pointing to it did the job.

    • Dirtdog profile image

      Dirtdog 8 years ago from New Smyrna Beach / Edgewater , Florida

      very effective post yes indeed here in the states if one raises a hand at a child it could turn into a row at the local jail and the little brats taken away . and at some instances the parents billed for child support expenses . it has far from gotten out of hand and turned total brats out of the little snowflakes as such . parents should be taught the lessons of conflicting errors in there ways before the little conceptions ever take a breath of life .

      facts figures and the reality of bringing up snowflakes somehow ought to be exposed clearly in the education system before the actions of hmm copulation ever takes place.

    • landthatilove profile image

      landthatilove 8 years ago from ohio

      Just watch the other members of the animal kingdom. Sometimes the babies get a good swat, sometimes picked up and removed from the situation, sometimes a growl, sometimes gently guided or left to suffer the natural consequences. Don't see any mauling from the parents. I think that spanking is like swatting and then there is mauling. Big difference. Sometimes it's just as simple as watching another species and seeing their success at raising young. Humans can over think things sometimes. It gets so complex nothing makes sense and nobody agrees. go for simple.

      One day in Wallmart my son who was about 3 1/2 threw a tantrum because I said no to a toy. He was kicking and screaming and thrashing about. I ended up spanking him and setting firmly in the cart and saying " I said NO!" I was not mad but I was determined to show who was the boss here. Then it struck me that I had SPANKED MY KID IN PUBLIC! Well I looked around and the looks on the other's faces I expected a round of applause to emerge. People were smiling at me with a knowing look. He was still bawling like a calf, not because I had broken any bones but because he was mad he did not get his way. However the kicking and thrashing did stop. IN the future when I told him no to a demand he simply accepted it.

    • Sally's Trove profile image

      Sherri 8 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

      Hot topic, Shalini, especially in tandem with Elena's hub.

      I believe that parents have a responsibility to empathize with their children, meaning to identify with them no matter what stage of development the children are in. With empathy comes understanding and the resulting adult action of using that understanding to turn a child's behavior around to the rules that are established in the family. This can be done without spanking.

      We are supposed to be the adults...let's not act as children, or worse, as authoritative figures who control by means of subjugation and humiliation, which is what spanking is.

      I know my opinion does not align with yours or most who have commented here. I just know that there is a different way, and the ability to walk that different path depends on the adult doing two things: being responsible for his own emotional well-being and being the role model for the child in every way.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Thank you Aya and Pete - as long as its done right and for the right reason, maybe it's a good thing!

    • Pete Maida profile image

      Pete Maida 8 years ago

      I agree one hundred percent. If a parent knows how to spank and for the proper reason it is better for the child than a frustrated parent that spends hours sniping at the child and making things worse.

    • Aya Katz profile image

      Aya Katz 8 years ago from The Ozarks

      Shalini, great hub. I agree.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Shamel - beating is so wrong. A spank should never be more than a smart tap on the bottoms, more as a corrective measure than to inflict pain, and never top take out one's frustration on a little child.

      BrianS - I can see your point. We need to protect out little ones from abuse and as you say, a spank can escalate into violence. However banning any kind of physical punishment might not be the answer.

      Elena - Wonderful hub - I've added a link :)

      Sabu - Thrashing has to be a no-no. Spanking is or rather should be quick to be effective. If a No works,there's no need to spank - it should be a last recourse when it doesn't.

      BKCreative - yes, I do believe as well that we are confusing them far too much.

      Frieda - it should ideally have been about disciplining and not spanking - long lectures can be terrible, can't they?

      Dohn - torture? That's sad - I don't think children should ever be hurt - they are so defenceless.

      Annie - 'without discipline a child is handicapped' - I so agree!

      fastfreta - true - when children know their limits, spanking could become redundant.

      Tatjana - I'm sorry. Yes, so much depends on the kind of people parents are. We need to be restrained in our disciplining - otherwise it could be tragic for the child.

      marshall - I'm sure you didn't need to be :)

      pan1974 - haha - now that's a new one!

      Thanks everyone for reading!

    • pan1974 profile image

      April 8 years ago from Columbus,Ga

      What if you spank them,than they laugh and say,that don't hurt.Some kids get immune to spankings.So I had to stop doing that and just take their video game,or t.v.etc.

    • marshall92 profile image

      marshall92 8 years ago

      I am glad I was never spanked as a child!

    • Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

      Tatjana-Mihaela 8 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA

      Spanking did not help in my case. It hurts. It produces hate and lack of self-esteem. Later on, when I grew older, I intentionally started to do everything what was forbidden to me before. My revenge.

      Parents or adults cannot control themselves - if they are angry, they react with anger. So spanking sooner or later becomes act of violence.

      Anyhow, the way how parents raise the child comes from inside of them...

      This might be good advice in very rare cases, and depends of the intention of parent and intention of child.

      I deeply understand your point - kids today are so often completely out of any control, and parents so often do not know how to handle them, so everybody around becomes victim of such approach. From that point of view, on many public places, I would -with the highest pleasure- spank the both - parents and children...he, he.

    • fastfreta profile image

      Alfreta Sailor 8 years ago from Southern California

      Hi Shalini, I'm from the old school, that says spare the rod, spoil the child. And that's the way we raised our children. But because of that, we didn't have to spank them that often. Good hub!

    • annie laurie profile image

      annie laurie 8 years ago from England

      This is a great hub but unfortunately not in line with popular thinking and as a society we are paying the price for that. I think that so often lack of private discipline leads to public disgrace, just sit in any restaurant and watch the undisciplined kids run amok.

      Spanking and discipline are so different and far removed from violence of any kind, without discipline a child is handicapped and spoiled and his life is all the poorer for its lack. Love and discipline go hand in hand.

    • dohn121 profile image

      dohn121 8 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

      I got both treatments as a kid: Torture and spanking! In time, I learned to behave my self much better and found an outlet for my abundance of energy through sports and drawing, and later on, writing. I commend you for your efforts for pointing this out. Great job! Thanks, Shalini!

    • Frieda Babbley profile image

      Frieda Babbley 8 years ago from Saint Louis, MO

      Excellent. My favorite part, don't torture with talk lol. Example is a much better example. Not to mention, HOW you discipline speaks volumes to a child, whether we realize it or not. Thanks for this wonderful hub, Shalini.

    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 8 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Great topic, great hub!

      We have totally confused beating a child out of anger with spanking to serve as a serious warning when absolutely necessary. It's the parent's call.

    • sabu singh profile image

      sabu singh 8 years ago

      I am a bit ambivalent on this. Luckily we had two girls and we never had to use violence of any sort. Spanking is a sort of violence I guess.

      In boarding school, we were thrashed on our bottoms with rubber slippers by the prefects if we stepped out of line. I'm not too sure if it helped, but I do remember the pain and humiliation.

    • Elena. profile image

      Elena. 8 years ago from Madrid

      Well, it's out and about. Let's see if it generates as much hate email as my anti-gay bashing hub. Laugh!

    • BrianS profile image

      Brian Stephens 8 years ago from Castelnaudary, France

      Can't make my mind up about this entirely, mainly because its all about the level. If everyone could follow your guidelines I don't think there would be a problem.

      Unfortunately things can escalate so what starts out as good intentions for discipline can get a little out of hand and end up being issued through the frustration which you warn against.

    • shamelabboush profile image

      shamelabboush 8 years ago

      Great advice. I've known some parents, specially fathers who beat up their kids out of anger which is WRONG. we should spank to correct not to release some kind of frustration! otherwise, we shouldn't blame ourselves if the kids grow up with complexities and traumas. Thanks Shalini Kagal for the nice and educative hub.


    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Hi Elena - look forward to it .... and you don't need to :)

    • Elena. profile image

      Elena. 8 years ago from Madrid

      Hi Shalini -- I'm trying to put a little essay together, if I manage I'll credit you for the inspiration :-)

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Ah yes, flight just made them more furious, right?

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      ralwus 8 years ago

      My parents were firm believers in 'spare the rod spoil the child'. Usually my brothers got it for fighting amongst themselves. I never had to go through quite as much as I was the youngest boy and soon learned what happened by observation. hehe Number 1 rule, don't run away and try to hide, only worse on the vicitm. Stand still and take it like a man and it is mild in comparison.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Hi C - thanks for reading...a board? a hose? no, I can see why you were a real fast learner! :D

    • profile image

      ralwus 8 years ago

      This is sound advice. I was raised that way and I was a fast learner, yes sir, I watched me p's and q's while my siblings got lashed with trees and the poor girls back then were always in skirts or shorts baring their legs to a good switching as they danced and hollered. LOL We boys got it with a board or even sometimes a garden hose. LOL We laugh about it now, wasn't much fun then but it was very effective.hehe

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Clear, consistent and objective - I think you've wrapped it all up neatly and nicely in your comment, Paraglider! Thanks for coming by.